Kenyan politics marred with blackmail, intimidation, Ruto tells Americans – The Star, Kenya

• He, however, said that the people have stood very firmly against any move to make decisions on their behalf.
• Ruto said that despite the use of the criminal justice system to intimidate leaders, he is confident of victory.
Deputy President William Ruto has said that there is a lot of blackmail and intimidation ahead of the August 9 polls. https://bit.ly/3tkyyRb
Deputy President William Ruto has said that there is a lot of blackmail and intimidation ahead of the August 9 polls.
Speaking at the Karson Institute for Race, Peace and Social Justice in Maryland, US, Ruto said that despite the use of the criminal justice system to intimidate leaders, he is confident he will clinch the presidency.
“Kenyans will make independent choices. We would have expected to do this without the baggage of blackmail going on at the moment but unfortunately, that’s where we are,” he said.
Ruto, however, said that the people have stood very firmly against any move to make decisions on their behalf.
“There is a lot of blackmail, intimidation and use of criminal justice system to intimidate leaders to ask people to vote in a certain way. I am very confident that the will of the people of Kenya will prevail,” he said.
The DP noted that the biggest issues on the ballot during the August general election will be the democracy of the country and whether people have the opportunity to make choices, devoid of blackmail, threats and intimidation.
“That is what encourages the current push by many Kenyans to say hatupangwingwi, meaning we want to make our choices without being choreographed, chaperoned or intimidated,” he said.
Ruto added that Kenyans will be also be making choices about the economy and the democratisation of the economy.
“There is a feeling our economy has been captured and brokered and become exclusionist and that’s why, in our push, we must democratise our economy, make it inclusive, and bring everybody on board and that’s the push that is going to inform elections in our country,” he said.
“It comes in different forms, job creation, expanding opportunities for business, food processing agro-processing, and interventions that will create a much more inclusive society.”
Ruto left the country on Sunday for a 12-day tour of the US, UK and Qatar.
During the trip, he is expected to meet different groups of people across different states, including government officials.
On Wednesday, the DP is scheduled to meet US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Molly Phee.
The two will discuss US-Kenya Strategic Partnership at the US Department of State.
In a schedule seen by the Star, Ruto will meet Phee at 0100 PM EST (9 pm Kenyan time).
The two will discuss economic prosperity, defence cooperation, governance and civilian security, multilateral and regional issues and health cooperation.
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