Senate Majority Whip Irungu Kang’ata who on January 24, 2021 claimed that Jubilee Party had plotted to remove him from the position but Deputy President William Ruto’s camp came to his rescue.
Senate Majority Whip Irungu Kang’ata has claimed that Jubilee Party had plotted to remove him from the position but Deputy President William Ruto’s camp came to his rescue.
Mr Kang’ata rose to the position following last year’s de-whipping of senators affiliated to Dr Ruto’s Tangatanga faction. It is the same group that he actively participated in its removal that he now says has come to his rescue.
Speaking to the Nation by phone on Sunday, Mr Kang’ata, who is the Murang’a senator, said that immediately his December 30 open letter to the president — warning him that the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) was bound to flop in Mt Kenya region — was published by the media on January 4, things fell apart.
“I started receiving phone calls from all powerful institutions in this government demanding that I recant the letter and also I be funded to go to the grassroots and speak well of BBI. I refused since I had, and still retain, a conviction I was being truthful and helping my president escape political shame shadowing him in Mt Kenya,” he said.
The Murang’a senator said the next scheme after the plan to coerce him to conform flopped was to kick him out of the prestigious senate’s perch “but Tangatanga wing of Senate formation refused to play ball hence denying the plot numbers. I had revealed how Jubilee Party honchos had threatened to remove me from the Senate Chief Whip’s position, scandalise me and put me to jail if I refused to recant the letter by January 5. Now that I have refused to disown my letter, the intimidation has commenced,” he said.
He added: “After they realised they don’t have the numbers to engineer my removal as whip, they have now reverted to using hard power of sending investigators for politics. The effect of these tactics is to make politicians cower and stop speaking the truth. That doesn’t advance the interests of Jubilee in my view,” he said.
Already, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) is probing Mr Kang’ata and 25 other law firms over possible fraud in billing the Nairobi County government exorbitant legal charges. Mr Kang’ata is said to have received Sh3.3 million from City Hall in 2018 and — which he confirms was the case — but insists that it was an above board transaction between two parties.
Mr Kang’ata insisted that the EACC list has 25 law firms as a decoy, and that his is the real culprit being sought.
“Of course I have all the documents to show my singular payment from city hall was legal and legitimate. It’s not a coincidence that the investigation is being done three years after the payment,” the senator said.
He reiterated that the ruling Jubilee Party remains unpopular in Mt Kenya and that BBI will be a “political miscarriage” in the region unless it is repackaged and made people-driven with well-meaning content that seeks to lessen, not inflate, the wage bill burden on Kenyans.
He accused EACC of being transformed into a political hunting dog that is hoodwinking Kenyans that it is battling corruption.
“To be seen to be a serious anti-graft body, let it now go for the many known corrupt governors and those who have been incriminated in ripping off Kenyans in the Covid-19 billions scandal. As things stand, you can be corrupt as long as you are supporting BBI,” he said.
Mr Kang’ata has since admitted that he is retracing his political loyalty to Tangatanga saying “that is my brainchild, a founder member and Dr Ruto’s chief marketer since 2013 in Mt Kenya region”.