‘Claim of plot to kill William Ruto shook me’, Ex-CS Sicily Kariuki

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‘Claim of plot to kill William Ruto shook me’, Ex-CS Sicily Kariuki

According to former Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki’s latest book, the controversial claims from 2019 regarding a meeting among Cabinet Secretaries to discuss the assassination of then Deputy President William Ruto were a result of power struggles between President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy’s faction.

Kariuki allegedly engaged in discussions with two fellow Cabinet members to undermine Ruto, who is now the President.

She characterizes the phone call from the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) regarding this matter as both shocking and unimaginable, stating it as “the gravest accusation one could face.”

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In her newly released memoir, “Breaking the Illusions,” unveiled in Nairobi yesterday, Kariuki highlights her ongoing bewilderment regarding the allegations.

She suggests that these accusations may have stemmed from the fractured relationship between the highest echelons of the presidency, indicating a rift between the top two figures.

“To date, I don’t know the truth. I have never discussed this matter with either Mr Kenyatta or Dr Ruto. All I know is that I became a victim of a political relationship gone really bad! I know that politics can be dirty and leave innocent souls hurt when one is used as collateral,” she writes.

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Kariuki recounts in her memoir how she, accompanied by the two other Cabinet Secretaries, visited the headquarters of the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI). However, she opted not to provide a statement as no formal complaint had been filed.

“The only record was a letter that was circulating on social media. We pressed the detective to authenticate it for us to record the statement. He further said the DP had called him on the phone to register his concern, which is what prompted them to ask us to come and record statements,” Ms Kariuki recalls.

The memoir further unveils that Mr. Kenyatta had a tendency to make cryptic phone calls to his close circle prior to Cabinet appointments and reshuffles.

Kariuki describes how the former President would reach out as if engaging in casual conversation, recalling one such call before he announced his Cabinet lineup in January 2018 at the onset of his second term, during which they exchanged New Year greetings.

“This call, just two hours before the Cabinet announcement, puzzled me. Why the friendly call and the greetings? Why today? Was he preparing me not to panic? Why such a significant announcement only two hours later?” she writes.

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In January 2020, before a reshuffle, Mr. Kenyatta reached out to Kariuki with a casual exchange of pleasantries. She sensed there might be something he was preparing her for and shared her intuition with her husband.

Furthermore, whenever corruption allegations surfaced, Mr. Kenyatta would contact his ministers. Kariuki discloses at least two instances where he called her to gather her perspective on misconduct allegations he had been informed of.

Kariuki speculates that during her time as Minister of Health, when she vigorously combated the embezzlement of public funds, certain “cartels” may have provided the President with false information about her, prompting him to reach out to her directly.

“I had a reason to believe that the so-called cartels had lied to the President, as I was pulling the noose too tightly around their necks. I was, however, not ready to give in to intimidation,” writes Ms Kariuki.

Ms. Kariuki expresses frustration over the fact that Cabinet Secretaries are often disconnected from financial matters within their ministries, yet they are held accountable for any allegations of impropriety. Following the mentioned call and the speculated misinformation, she didn’t remain in the Health ministry for much longer. She admits feeling relieved when she was reassigned to the Water docket.

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Additionally, Kariuki admits elsewhere in her memoir that she was the one responsible for halting a performance by Congolese singer Koffi Olomide in 2016 after he was involved in an altercation with a member of his entourage.

Ms. Kariuki also shares, with a touch of humor, the nicknames she acquired as a result of her no-nonsense work ethic. Among these monikers were “Thatcher,” likening her to the British Prime Minister known for her strong leadership style, and “CoB,” derived from her habit of insisting on updates by the close of business.

She also discloses that following two unsuccessful impeachment attempts against her in Parliament, some Members of Parliament later approached her to extend apologies for falsely accusing her.

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‘Claim of plot to kill William Ruto shook me’, Ex-CS Sicily Kariuki

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