Every once in a while, I correct myself. Today is one of those days — I am, of my own volition, eating humble pie. Methought for the longest that Elgeyo-Marakwet Senator, the irascible Kipchumba Murkomen, was a political novice and greenhorn in DP William Ruto’s petri-dish and laboratory.
I must now admit that I was wrong — very wrong. Mr Murkomen, though I don’t trust him farther than I can throw him, may turn out to be smarter than his teacher.
This is the rare case where the tail wags the dog. Bottom line — Mr Murkomen, who’s Mr Ruto’s understudy, is a cunning political animal who deceptively pretends to defend Mr Ruto. In reality, he’s furiously working for the DP’s downfall.
What’s shocking is that Mr Murkomen is cannibalising Mr Ruto in plain sight. I am stupefied Mr Ruto, himself a master strategist of the political dark arts, hasn’t figured out Mr Murkomen is his worst enemy.
Exhibit A is that Mr Murkomen is having lots of fun while Mr Ruto has sunk into a mental state akin to clinical depression. Whereas Mr Ruto cuts the pathetic figure of a forlorn dejected homo sapien, Mr Murkomen is the diametrical opposite and projects the image of a virile charging bull — full of braggadocio and entitlement fury.
He fulminates with the gusto of a mini-lion while Mr Ruto, the weather-beaten lion, cowers in the corner. He’s like a deer caught in the headlights.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that while Mr Murkomen is ascendant, Mr Ruto is in a precipitous decline. They are travelling in opposite directions. There’s no doubt Mr Ruto created Mr Murkomen, but Mr Ruto’s progeny is eating his lunch to fuel himself.
That’s why Mr Murkomen is ubiquitous on TV, radio, the print press, and social media. He knows that all publicity, any publicity — except on crimes of moral turpitude — is good. He’s seizing every opportunity to occupy Kenya’s zeitgeist under the false guise of protecting Mr Ruto. Mr Murkomen knows what most Kenyans don’t – that Mr Ruto has become the neutered biblical Samson. Jubilee deceptively lured him, cut his hair, and rendered him impotent.
Let’s set the stage. We know that everything — and I mean the whole kit and caboodle — has fallen apart between Mr Ruto and his boss, Jubilee’s Uhuru Kenyatta. I don’t know what Mr Ruto did to Mr Kenyatta, but it must be a sin for which there’s no redemption. As they say, Mr Kenyatta is ‘done done’ with Mr Ruto.
Mr Murkomen may not have been a factor in putting the marriage between Mr Kenyatta and Mr Ruto asunder, but the loud senator has made sure the chasm between the two is wider than the Great Rift Valley.
He’s added fuel to the raging inferno and made it impossible for any rapprochement between Kenya’s numero uno and his numero dos.
Paradoxically, Mr Murkomen and the anti-Ruto Jubilee wing headed by party vice chair David Murathe are working for the same ends, but from different directions. Mr Murathe, a proxy for Mr Kenyatta, wants to annihilate the DP and put a kibosh on his presidential ambitions.
Mr Murkomen, on the other hand, is cannibalising Mr Ruto in the false pretext of defending him. Mr Murkomen hasn’t seen any fire near Mr Ruto that he didn’t want to fan. It’s clear Mr Murkomen’s ultimate goal is to weaken and isolate Mr Ruto so he can inherit him among the Kalenjin. The unwitting
Weak and broken
Murathe-Murkomen axis, though mind-boggling, is a pincer move that will turn Mr Ruto into Don Quixote. Mr Ruto is surrounded.
If there’s any doubt that Mr Ruto is the polar opposite of Mr Murkomen, the former’s interview with Citizen TV’s Joe Ageyo should remove all doubt. Mr Ageyo toyed with Mr Ruto like a yo-yo, a plaything. We all saw Mr Ruto squirming. He hung his head in defeat.
His voice was weak and broken. He frequently shifted in his chair as though he was sitting on thorns. He eyes were shifty. He virtually came apart at the seams.
I thought he should fire the advisors who arranged that pitiable TV interview. I am sure Mr Murkomen was somewhere licking his chops and cheering the hapless DP on his path to self-destruction. It was painful to watch.
I don’t think Mr Ruto should become Kenya’s head of state. That’s not a huge secret. Even so, I felt sorry for the once proud Eldoret North MP. They say the bigger they are, the harder they fall. Just ask the mugumo (fig) tree.
It’s remarkable how effectively Mr Kenyatta has castrated one of Kenya’s formidable politicos. They say in America that politics ain’t beanbag. They also say keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
Methinks Mr Ruto isn’t keeping Mr Murkomen close. If he is, then he’s failed to discipline him. Perhaps he can’t. If so, Mr Murkomen has already supplanted him.