Deputy President William Ruto allies in the National Assembly have been dealt a blow after the Jubilee party leadership bowed to ODM pressure to eject them from plum committees ahead of the much anticipated Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) constitutional reforms.
Pro-President Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga handshake MPs now dominate the crucial committees to pass the reforms as envisioned by the two leaders.
In a calculated move to tame the influence of the perceived anti-BBI MPs, the Committee on Selection chaired by National Assembly Majority Leader Amos Kimunya yesterday moved the Ruto allies to less influential committees following complaints from ODM Chairman John Badi and his colleagues.
In the new changes, vocal Ruto man Kimani Ichungwa has been placed in the Members Service and Facilities Committee.
The Kikuyu Constituency MP had been nominated to the Finance Committee after he was stripped of his role as chair of the powerful Budget and Appropriation Committee.
Uhuru right-hand man Kanini Kega is poised to replace Ichungwa at the Budget and Appropriation Committee.
Ruto allies Baringo North MP William Cheptumo who chaired the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee (JLAC) and his deputy Alice Wahome (Kandara) have been forced out of the committee with Kimunya handing it over to pro-handshake MPs.
Kahawa Tungu understands that Kangema MP Muturi Kigano is set to take up the chairmanship of the committee deemed crucial for the BBI constitutional reforms. He will be deputised by Rarieda MP Otiende Amollo.
Aden Duale, who was recently stripped of house majority leader role has been placed in the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chaired by Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi.
Vocal Ruto ally Benjamin Washiali, who was not spared in the recent Jubilee purge that saw him lose Majority Whip position, has been placed in the Broadcasting committee as a member.
Immediate Delegated Legislation Committee Chairperson Gladys Shollei has been placed in the Procedure & House Rules Committee.
Tiaty MP William Kamket is poised to take over the Uasin Gishu Woman Representative’s former role.
Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria who was recently de-whipped from the Transport Committee where he served as Vice Chairperson has been placed in the Committee on Implementation.
Kimunya retained Pokot South MP David Pkosing and his Marakwet West counterpart William Kisang as chair Transport and ICT committees respectively. This is despite the two being perceived as Ruto loyalists.
On the other hand, ODM is said to have picked Homa Bay Woman Rep Gladys Wanga to chair the Finance and Planning Committee, while her Busia counterpart Florence Mutua will chair the Education Committee.
Kanduyi MP Wafula Wamunyinyi is poised to chair the CDF Committee.
Early this month, Kimunya was labelled a dictator in a chaotic select committee meeting whose main agenda was to share Jubilee purge spoils.
This is after the Kipipiri MP declined to allow any changes proposed by the majority and minority sides.