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LIVE BLOG: The 2022 deputy presidential debate

Justina Wamae, Ruth Wambui, Rigathi Gachagua, Martha Karua face off in live debate

Kenya Kwanza presidential running mate Rigathi Gachagua and Azimio running mate Martha Karua ahead of the 2022 deputy presidential debate on July 19, 2022


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Roots Party deputy presidential candidate Justina Wambui Wamae arrives at the Catholic University of East Africa

Pre-Debate Analysis

Agano Party deputy presidential candidate Ruth Mutua arrives for deputy presidential debate


After a brief balloting process, Ms Justina Wamae draws first place to enter the debate podium and first to also give her opening remarks during the first round of the deputy presidential debate.


Justina's Opening Remarks: "My focus is telling Kenyans the truth and that is what the Roots Party stands for."


Ruth's Opening Remarks: "Whatever you desire and whatever you want to achieve, the Agano Party is here to do that."


On the role of the Deputy President

Justina: It is not about being a woman or not, it is about executing the Roots Party manifesto.

Ruth: I'm glad that finally there's an opportunity for a woman to be deputy president and I know what the role of DP entails.


Are you being sponsored to vie in this presidential election?

Justina: How can we have better ideas than the alleged sponsor? We are here mpaka mwisho. Our mode of campaigning depends on Kenyans, they call us to a place like Nakuru and they fuel our cars.

Ruth:We still believe Roots Party is being sponsored and the polls indicate that. Wanapunguza numbers zetu in those polls.


On Marijuana Legalization

Justina: I have never smoked marijuana and I don't intend to begin. And to clarify, we intend to focus on industrial hemp which is rich in CBD not THC which has psychoactive ingredients.
Ruth: I don't believe in marijuana legalization and I don't believe in what she has claimed about the detoxification and purification properties of marijuana.


What sets you apart from Rigathi Gachagua and Martha Karua?
Justina: I respect them, being on a ballot paper with them is humbling. But what sets me apart is that I can relate to the youth being learned and having no job in this country, I relate to business people because I am in business. I know what we need is policies and responsive leadership.

Ruth: I have a lot in common with Justina but our competitors, even having been in leadership for so long, they have let us down. I don't see what they have done and I think that we are bringing fresh ideas.


How will your administration deal with corruption?

Justina: We believe in forgiving and moving forward. We will not allow corrupt individuals to live in Kenya. We also intend to empower Kenyans so that there will be no need to steal public funds. The economy is messed up and we need an honest leader.

Ruth: We will offer moratoriums for those who have stashed corruption cash overseas. We will also give those accused of corruption a chance to return the funds without facing serious repercussions.

[Full Video] Round 1 of deputy presidential debate: Justina Wamae and Ruth Mutua

Second round of deputy presidential debate begins, featuring Kenya Kwanza running mate Rigathi Gachagua and Azimio running mate Martha Karua.


Suppose you differ with the president, should the Constitution be reverted to have the DP appointed?

Gachagua: What has brought William Ruto and me together and the focus to bring change to the lives of the Kenyan people will keep us from having differences. What caused a rift between Uhuru and Ruto is an inferiority complex.
Karua: The Constitution is not wrong, our behaviour is what is wrong. There is no need to change the Constitution. I assure Kenyans that I understand my role, it is to support the president.


History of difference in values between Karua and Raila

Karua: The coalition government (Kibaki-Raila) was unable to root out corruption and I said that publicly when I resigned. I had my reservations but as Narc-Kenya I still worked closely with Raila in CORD and up to 2017 when I vied for governor. What drew me to work with Raila is that we share a common value, that we look at issues through the lens of social justice.


Gachagua: Karua is on record saying that Raila and Uhuru should retire together. We need leaders who can be consistent. President Uhuru is also on record saying that he chose Karua to be Raila's running mate. Both Raila and Karua are Uhuru's projects and that is how Uhuru will continue ruling by proxy.


Karua: It is important to be truthful in this debate. Uhuru has not assigned me any duties and indeed he cannot assign me any duty in an administration he is not part of. My colleague's and his captain's beef with Uhuru should not be part of this discussion.


What is the source of your wealth?

Gachagua: I am an astute businessman, any corruption charges against me are blackmail from Uhuru Kenyatta because I refused to abandon Ruto despite threats even through State organs. They are fabricated charges and they could not produce any evidence in court a year and a half later. I am worth Sh800 million and what they have frozen by the government is Sh200 million.


Karua: That Mr Gachagua had Sh5 Billion appear in his accounts and he can't explain it is the reason why it is important to declare your wealth before getting into office. Leaders need to come clean, if you cannot come clean you cannot fulfil what you promise to Kenyans. In 2013 I declared my wealth as Sh56 million, it has since appreciated and I'm now worth Sh150 million. I'm not thirsty for land or property, I'm happy having a place to call home.


How are you funding your campaigns?

Gachagua: We are raising funds in kind, most of it is from donations. There isn't much in terms of cash but in the coming weeks we will have actual figures because we need to send out agents and all that.

Karua: Public donations in cash and kind. The Azimio campaign secretariat is keeping track of donations and my own campaign secretariat is also keeping track.


How will you deal with corruption?

Karua: There will be no sacred cows, anyone found dealing in corruption will face the full force of the law. The claim that we are using public resources is fabricated, any public officer who attends our rallies does so of their own volition. Raila is a great mobilizer and so am I.

Gachagua: Corruption must be fought and the real problem is state capture, where the people in power compete for resources with the people they serve. We must deal with conflict of interest and state capture, we will form a Commission.


What do you plan to do to reduce the cost of food?

Gachagua: A mistake was made maliciously to deny farmers subsidies on fertilizers and that caused a drop in production and eventually raised the prices of food. We will reduce the cost of fertilizer from Sh6,500 to Sh2,500.

Karua: The Jubilee government has fertilizer subsidies, the price of a bag of fertilizer at NCPB depots is Sh2,900. The real problem is scandals and corruption cartels that have plagued the agriculture sector and Azimio will deal with it.

[Full Video] Round 2 of deputy presidential debate: Rigathi Gachagua and Martha Karua

Closing Statements

Gachagua: I want to tell the people of Kenya that William Ruto and I have a plan, give us an opportunity to spearhead the third liberation and that is on the economy.

Karua: This election is about trust, look to see which team you can trust. We offer our track record. Critically examine the teams and I'm sure you will come to the conclusion that Azimio is the team.

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