Turkana Governor Jeremiah Lomorukai has openly supported the extension of the presidential term to seven years, advocating for President William Ruto to serve for 14 years.
Lomorukai, an opposition politician elected under the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), on Thursday, explained that he was impressed by Ruto’s service delivery and thus urged the country to accord him more time to secure his legacy.
The first-term governor further announced that he looked forward to succeeding Ruto as President upon retirement.
“After your 14 years, I will be president. As Turkana County Governor from the onset, I vowed to work with you,” Lomorukai, who assumed power in August 2022, stated during the Turkana Cultural and Tourism Festival opening ceremony in Lodwar town termed Tobonglore.
President Ruto and other leaders attends the Turkana Cultural and Tourism Festival in Lodwar Town on October 12, 2023.
To prove his admiration for Ruto, Lomorukai ditched ODM for the ruling party, the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) which belongs to the Kenya Kwanza Alliance.
According to the governor, he switched camps despite facing threats from powers he declined to disclose.
The stiff opposition, he emphasized, fueled his desire and decision to campaign for the President in the next General Election, pledging to deliver at least 80 per cent of the votes from his region.
In the last election, opposition leader Raila Odinga garnered 95,620, edging Ruto, who got 46,510 despite the former governor Josphat Nanok campaigning for the latter.
Nanok, whom Lomorukai succeeded, accused Raila of leading mass boycotts and was against development. Ruto rewarded him with a role in his government, appointing him as State House Deputy Chief of Staff.
Meanwhile, Lomurkai joined the clamor occasioned by Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei, who proposed extending Ruto’s term.
Cherargei, in his submission, argued that extending the term limit would give the president sufficient time to implement their manifesto.
His UDA party members, however, did not welcome the idea. Secretary-General Cleophas Malala argued that President Ruto was more focused on delivering his manifesto and was steadfast in defending the Constitution.
“The Ruling Party is presently focused on delivering on its promises to the People of Kenya, mindful that it shall in due course submit its scorecard for the people to evaluate. In doing so, we are guided by the timeline to the next general election,” Malala commented.
Photo of President Ruto trying out a traditional meal at the Turkana Cultural Festivals in Lodwar October 12, 2023