Why the rift between DP Ruto and CS Matiang’i continue to widen

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DP Ruto, CS Matiangi clash over police uniform tender

Deputy President William Ruto and Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i/COURTES

The war between Deputy President William Ruto and Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i has been exposed after months of silent wrangles.

According to The Star , the new multi-billion shillings war between the two leaders involves a tender for the supply of the new police Uniform.

Ruto reportedly asked the CS to award the tender to other people after it was reported that the National Youth Service (NYS) ran out of the required fabric.

Matiang’i stood his ground, insisting yesterday that all uniforms will be made by the NYS, as directed by President Kenyatta.

Without naming names, an angry Matiang’i told off a “politician” who wanted a share in the supply of the multi-million tender to supply fabric for the new blue police uniforms. He was speaking at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development after a meeting with MPs and the boda boda task force.

“The Inspector General of Police, the PS and myself have been under pressure by some quarters, and all manner of thieves, that we should import police uniforms.
“Listen to me very carefully. We will not import police uniforms, go and write another 10 headlines. We will not import police uniforms from any country. We have to promote the local textile industry,” Matiang’i said.

The Standard yesterday reported that police have not been able to get their new uniforms because the fabric is unavailable.

But Matiang’i dismissed the claims, insisting that the government has already paid NYS Rivatex and companies in the Export Processing zones to make the uniforms.

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“We will not import police uniforms. No amount of pressure, manipulation or anything will change that position. That style of life has come to an end in Kenya. It has come to an end and no one is going to live that way,” the angry Matiang’i said.

CS Fred Matiang’i/FILE

“Sasa wewe na wakora wako mahali mlikubaliana mtanunua uniform mtaenda muwaambie na muwaeleze kwamba hatutanunua uniform kutoka kwingine,” Matiang’i said. This loosely translates to “You and your crooks, wherever you agreed that you will import police uniforms, go back and tell them that we are not importing.”

The two have also had disagreements in the past including the contested boda boda crackdown set to be implemented.

On Monday, while speaking to Kakamega residents, Ruto opposed the new crackdown explaining that even boda boda operation was a business and the industry players needed respect.

“There are many boda boda people in Kenya . They too are business people and I have told those concerned not to harass boda boda people,” stated Ruto.

In February this year Ruto and Matiang’i clashed over a multi-billion-shilling tender to supply arms.

According to the Star , the police department had floated a Sh3 billion restricted tender for the weapons. Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinett then drafted a letter recommending that a tender be awarded to a company in Eastern Europe.

“When the CS saw it, he refused to sign and instead asked the IG to provided minutes from the National Security Advisory Council and the National Security Council supporting the recommendation.

“The DP then asked Matiang’i why he was sitting on the tender papers but Matiang’i said he was waiting for the minutes, which never came,” a government official aware of the incident told the Star.

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In 2016, the war between Ruto and the then Education CS turned vicious after Matiang’i had appointed a new Vice Chancellor, Laban Ayiro, for Moi University.

Ruto’s allies led by Uasin Gishu governor Jackson Mandago and his Elgeyo Marakwet counterpart stormed the institution demanding that the CS to hire Prof Isaac Kosgey.

DP William Ruto/FILE

Ruto then asked Matiang’i to appoint Kosgey but Matiang’i refused, insisting that Ayiro was the most qualified to take over the leadership of the university.

“The CS then wrote a letter instructing himself to appoint Kosgey and wanted the DP to sign it. Ruto took the letter and tore it up,” a source in the Office of the President said.

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