Deputy President William Ruto was invited for the COVID-19 conference on Monday and confirmed attendance, State House spokesperson Kanze Dena has said.
“State function programmes are done once someone has been invited and confirmed attendance. I don’t do the invites, but the information we have is that he was invited,” Kanze Dena told Nation.
On Monday, Ruto was a no show at the COVID-19 conference with speculations that he intentionally snubbed the event.
In attendance were Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i, Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka, Council of Governors Chairperson Wycliffe Oparanya, ODM leader Raila Odinga, Chief Justice David Maraga and President Uhuru Kenyatta.
The DP was expected to usher in the President to address the nation but since he failed to attend, the seat reserved for him was removed.
The Director of Communication in the DP’s office, Emmanuel Talam when questioned about the same indicated that it had become a norm for Ruto not to be invited to state functions.
For instance, according to Talam, he has no idea why the program detailed that the DP was to speak.
“I’ve no idea [why the programme showed he was scheduled to speak]. He’s rarely invited to COVID-19-related events. That’s on record. I don’t know about yesterday’s. But it would be interesting for anyone to suddenly realize that the DP is a stakeholder on matters of national importance,” Mr Talam said.
Ruto’s non-attendance to the event ignited mixed reactions from Kenyans with a section lauding him for the move while the other section castigated him for snubbing the event.