Kenyatta, Ruto ‘Social Distance’ at National Prayer Breakfast

Nairobi — The tiff between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto reemerged again on Thursday at the National Prayer Breakfast after the two leaders, who have always shared a table at similar events in the past broke off from the tradition.

During the event traditionally held at the Safari Park Hotel in Nairobi, Uhuru and Ruto sat pensively each sharing their own table with two other companions.

President Kenyatta shared his table with Chief Justice Martha Koome and Attonery General Kihara Kariuki.

Ruto shared his with National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi and his Senate counterpart Ken Lusaka, both his allies in the Kenya Kwanza Alliance.

The theme of this year’s prayer breakfast is ‘transition’ which comes barely two months before the country goes for a General Election.

And while the National Prayer Breakfast meeting is meant to preach national unity at a critical moment when the country heads to polls, that was not the case.

President Kenyatta and his deputy have turned fierce foes often engaging in bitter public exchanges as the succession politics hots up. Kenyatta has publicly declared that he “won’t allow” Ruto to succeed him.

Kenyatta has mobilized his Cabinet to campaign for Ruto’s archrival Raila Odinga.

The March 9, 2018 handshake between President Kenyatta and his once-erstwhile rival Odinga sounded a death knell to the bromance between the Head of State and DP Ruto born out of a 2012 accord.

President Kenyatta had on many occasions stated that Ruto will succeed him once he exits office in 2022 but after the 2017 polls, the President adopted a different stance saying his choice of successor would “shock the country”.

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