A vicious war of words has erupted in Githurai after traders based at the popular marketplace located along the Thika Superhighway accuse Deputy President William Ruto of deceit.
Speaking to the media on Friday, January 7, 2022, the frustrated business community claimed that the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party leader has failed to fulfil his earlier pledge of boosting their enterprise with a Sh2 million donation.
Led by Sospeter Mwangi, the traders say at least a thousand of them were invited to his official Karen residence where he vowed to donate Sh1 million to market traders and Sh1 million to transport operators respectively.
Mwangi explained that this unprecedented delay in the fulfilment of the promise has caused internal wrangles within the group after members started suspecting and harassing one another.
“We want to ask the deputy president to come clear on whether the money had been given to someone who didn’t remit to us or he was unable to deliver on his promise,” one of them angrily said.
According to the leaders, their trip to visit Ruto was organized by Nominated Senator Isaac Mwaura whom they now suspect to have stashed the money in his own pockets.
“Mwaura was in charge. He came here and picked those of us who went to Karen. We have tried to get to him because it is hard for us leaders. People on the ground have accused us of sharing the money among ourselves,” added another member of the group.
The DP, who is keen to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta ahead of the August 2022 polls, has been sharing cash handouts and other goodies to Kenyans in a bid to woo them to support his presidential bid.
In October 2021, Kongowea Market Traders decried that his cash donations had disappeared.
According to the traders, certain individuals hijacked Ruto’s visit to the area and reportedly fled with money meant to support the market’s small-scale enterprises.
The group which was led by Richard Nyangoto said that out of Sh2 million given out by Ruto, only Sh700,000 was distributed to the traders while the balance of Sh1.3 million disappeared.