Former Cabinet secretary Charles Keter skipped a Kenya Kwanza meeting in Kericho on Sunday.
The thanksgiving and prayer service organized for United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party nominated candidates from the region was graced by Ruto’s running mate and Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua and Ford Kenya party leader Moses Wetangula.
The event was part of the Coalition’s plan to cover the Rift Valley region on Sunday where the leaders separated into three teams before converging in Nakuru for a series of rallies.
While DP Ruto was in Uasin Gishu, ANC party Musalia Mudadavi among other leaders pitched a tent in Baringo.
Keter was recently handed a job to spearhead Ruto’s presidential campaigns in the region and was expected to make an appearance during the meeting as a show of acceptance of the offer.
Turkana Governor Josphat Nanok, Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika Moses Lenolkulal, Peris Tobiko, Samuel Tunai, Senator Murkomen, Margaret Wanjala and Immaculate Shamala are also in the team.
The former CS who was humiliated in the party’s primaries last month by former University lecturer Eric Mutai has kept off the limelight since then.
“I wish to thank the great people of Kericho for turning up to vote peacefully in the just concluded nominations exercise. I congratulate all winners and wish them all the best. To all my supporters, agents and teams, I convey my appreciation and gratitude for your support,” he wrote on his social media pages after the primaries.
While it was unclear if he had been invited to the meeting, it is understood that Keter chose to give it a wide berth.
The one-time Kericho Senator who has been a close confidant of Deputy President William Ruto was banking on endorsement to save his political career instead he (Ruto) left residents to decide on their own.
Our several attempts to reach him for a comment were unsuccessful.
Other leaders present were Governor Paul Chepkwony, Hillary Barchok (Bomet), Senator Aaron Cheruiyot, CCM party leader Isaac Rutto and several elected MPs.
In his address, Wetangula claimed the government was using fake opinion polls to influence the direction of how people would vote in the region.
“Raila had all along been relying on our influence and support to gain popularity but now that he is alone he no longer has any support from more so in our region,” he said.
He also accused some cabinet secretaries of misusing their positions to campaign for Odinga ahead of the August election.
Gachagua on his part continued to call on police officers to present their suggestions on issues bedevilling them so that they can be captured in their agenda with a view to addressing when they form the next government.
He also vouched for a six-piece voting pattern in the region saying UDA was the dominant party hence no need to mix.