Ken Lusaka; How I risked my position to please Uhuru, Ruto
The Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka recounted the tough times he went through during the second term of the Jubilee Government in the wake of a widened rift between President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto.
The most difficult assignment as Speaker was when Kipchumba Murkomen was being ousted as the Senate Majority leader and Susan Kihika as Majority Chief Whip.
“The President called for a meeting and said, ‘Mr Speaker utapitisha majina yangu? (Mr Speaker, will you endorse my motion)?” said Lusaka.
“I told him: ‘Mr. President, I have no capacity to contradict you but I must request that we follow procedure”
It did not, however, take much time before Deputy President William Ruto could call him about the same matter.
“My friend, we have come a long way, don’t throw me under the bus,” Ruto pleaded with Lusaka.
According to Lusaka, this was the most tempting time as Speaker of the Senate when he had to draw a line between either listening the President or his Deputy.
“I have never had so much tension in my life. Jubilee and Nasa were for the removal of Murkomen. I followed the Clerk’s counsel and stuck to the procedures.”
Lusaka was in a dilemma to listen to two of his bosses because of the role they both played for him to become Speaker of the Senate.
It all started when he lost his second shot as the Governor for Bungoma County after ditching Ford Kenya party for Jubilee.
Ruto asked Lusaka to ditch a tribal-village party (Ford Kenya) for Jubilee, at a time when he was embroiled in a wheelbarrow scandal in his first term as the Bungoma boss.
During his term, an audit was carried out in the county and established that one wheelbarrow was purchased at Sh109,000. Nine Wheelbarrows were procured.
After losing the seat, Lusaka went to Bomas of Kenya when the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) was declaring election winner and met President Kenyatta.
“Wewe sitakuacha. Tutakufa na wewe (I won’t abandon you, we will be together till the end). “This guy sacrificed his own position for my sake,” the President told other politicians present at Bomas in Lusaka’s presence.