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Delegates set to endorse Ruto as UDA presidential flag-bearer

Delegates set to endorse Ruto as UDA presidential flag-bearer

By Justus Karanja

Thousands of delegates are currently attending United Democratic Alliance (UDA) National Delegates Congress (NDC) that will unveil Deputy President William Ruto (pictured)as the presidential flag-bearer.

Early in the morning school buses could be seen filling up with residents of Kiandutu slums in the outskirts of Thika Town to attend the meeting.

The passengers were transported to Kasarani gymnasium to act as the delegates to beef up the numbers.

Those in attendance were promised Sh1500 as the allowance.

Ruto arrived in Kasarani for the National Delegates Conference at around 10am.

The DP was accompanied by his wife Rachel. He arrived at the fully packed indoor arena to a wild reception.

About 5,000 delegates are set to endorse him as the party's presidential flag-bearer.

Among the leaders present are Governor Anne Waiguru, UDA Secretary-General Veronica Maina, chairman Johnstone Muthama, Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua and Kandara MP Alice Wahome

Ruto is expected to be endorsed as the UDA's presidential flag-bearer.

Ruto will face Azimio la Umoja presidential candidate Raila Odinga in the August elections.

This comes three days after the party’s National Executive Committee declared him the most suitable to face Raila after interviews.

Ruto faced two competitors in the battle for the party’s presidential ticket. They were 23-year-old Nancy Wanjiru and Orina Jephanei.

However, the duo was disqualified on technicalities.

UDA delegates will have a one hour closed-door session to nominate the party leaders.

Meanwhile, Narc Kenya leader Martha Karua has dismissed reports she will attenda the UDA's National Delegates Conference.

Karua, through a series of tweets on Monday, termed reports linking her to the event as “​​fake”, saying, “the truth is that I am not attending @UDAParty NDC.”

Tharaka-Nithi Senator Senator Kithure Kindiki had earlier on Monday told journalists that the Narc leader was among the guests expected to grace the event which will see Ruto crowned as the party’s presidential flag bearer.

 “Tomorrow will be a game-changing and historic day because the largest party in the country will unveil its presidential candidate, who is DP Ruto,” Kindiki stated.

“We expect leaders from our partner parties to be present as our guests because our party leader has been a guest in some of their events. We expect the leader of the ANC party, Musalia Mudavadi, Ford Kenya’s Moses Wetang’ula, and the honorable Martha Karua of Narc Kenya. We expect other guests, but we will not tell you their names right now,” he added.

Karua’s co-principals in One Kenya Alliance (OKA) Kalonzo Musyoka and Kanu's Gideon Moi joined Raila Odinga’s Azimio La Umoja coalition on Saturday, leaving her next direction up for speculation.

Meanwhile, ANC Deputy Party leader Abdi Yarre has maintained that party boss Musalia Mudavadi was still in the presidential race and that the matter of a Kenya Kwanza presidential candidate was still up for discussion.

He, however, confirmed that they will be attending the event. 

“It is not automatic that Ruto is the automatic flag-bearer of Kenya Kwanza, we are negotiating and we are telling our supporters and reassure Kenyans that our position is clear, Musalia is a contender for the presidential flag bearer of 2022,” Yarre said. 

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