Rigathi Gachagua brushes off claims that he is a dictator

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Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua. [Mose Sammy, Standard]

Kenya Kwanza presidential running mate Rigathi Gachagua has dismissed reports that he is an abrasive leader who would likely be a dictator if Deputy President William Ruto won the August 9 General Election.

Gachagua was responding after some MPs allied to the Kenya Kwanza Alliance said they rejected his running mate candidature for fear that he is quarrelsome and dictatorial.

The Mathira MP, who spoke during an interview on Inooro FM today morning, brushed off the claims saying he is always ready to listen to people.

“I am not abrasive or a dictator but I have a firm stand on matters. I listen to people,” he said.

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Gachagua also shot down claims that there was a voting process where Tharaka Nithi Senator Kindiki Kithure was selected as the preferred running mate by MPs.

In the vote count, Kindiki garnered 23 votes, Gachagua four, National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi two, and Anne Waiguru one. There was one spoilt vote that went to Musalia Mudavadi, despite not being a contestant.

“There were no votes cast. People were just asked for their opinions.”

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Prior to the Ruto’s announcement, Gachagua says that he and Kindiki had approached the Deputy President and relayed that they would support his decision when he finally announced his running mate.

“The choice of a running mate is something very personal. You have to be in sync. Ruto was looking for a hard worker, a person whose focus was to change the lives of people,” he said.

If elected in the August 9, General Election, Gachagua insists that the coalition will focus on the bottom-up economic model.

The model, Gachagua said, will see the coalition slash funds on some established companies and use the money to help small-scale traders.

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“We want to change the focus that instead of pumping money in some companies, we will give the small scale traders. This way, the country will grow and we will stop borrowing money from China,” said Gachagua.

“We want the investors to continue investing but we also want the small-scale traders to benefit.”

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