Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has accused former State House Comptroller Kinuthia Mbugua of mishandling funds.
Gachagua exposes former Uhuru staffer behind Sh15B request days after polls
Gachagua clarified that he was not the one who requested the Sh15 billion days after the polls and instead identified a State House official who made the request.
According to Gachagua, Mbugua requested Sh1.5 billion from the National Treasury days after the 2022 General Election, claiming it was on behalf of the Office of the Deputy President. Gachagua claimed that Mbugua requested to save his face after President William Ruto won the election.
"The previous year, they cut the budget from Sh4 billion and they cut it by Sh1.5 billion which they tried to reinstate. When Ruto became president, the two were embarrassed and sought to undo the damage of what they had done," Gachagua said during a joint media interview on Sunday, March 12.
He also accused former Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani of being involved in the mishandling of funds, claiming that the two had cut off funds to the Office of the Deputy President for four years under the instructions of former president Uhuru Kenyatta.
"Ukur Yatani, Kinuthia Mbugua under the direction of former president Uhuru cut all funds to the office of the deputy president; for 4 years, then DP Ruto fueled GK cars, bought tea for his office, paid electricity bills from his own pockets," Gachagua added.
Gachagua clarifies Kenya Kwanza affiliation with UDA
Gachagua further expressed his support for the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) Secretary General Cleophas Malala's efforts to strengthen the party. However, he clarified that the intention is not to force anyone to join the ruling party.
"We don’t want to coerce anyone to fold their party, but if anyone feels the need they can fold and join," Gachagua said.
Malala has been pushing for the merger of all Kenya Kwanza affiliated parties into UDA to form a formidable party that will outlive its current leadership. He believes that there is no need to continue having parties for the sole purpose of winning elections.
Gachagua defends media criticism by the Kenya Kwanza government
Gachagua additionally spoke out against claims that the Kenya Kwanza government is out to suppress media freedom.
He explained that his criticism of the media was aimed at pointing out their shortcomings in objectivity and accuracy. Gachagua emphasized that the media has a responsibility to allow people to criticize it and to uphold journalistic ethics.
"Freedom of the press comes with a responsibility; to be objective and accurate. The media should be accountable and take criticism when they are not. If I find a media group is not objective, I will say so in broad daylight," he stated.
He further clarified that his previous remarks about 'crushing' the media were made in a political context and should not be misconstrued to mean that the government is suppressing media freedom.
Gachagua stated that he intended to defend the government against unfair criticism and propaganda from political opponents.
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