Deputy President William Ruto can realize his 2022 presidential bid without the Mt Kenya vote, political analyst Edward Kisiang'ani now claims.
He observes that though the DP might have it hard winning the race without the populous Mt Kenya region behind him, he can still bank on his inroads in other parts of the country for a win.
The university don states that Ruto has already succeeded in raiding regions considered ODM leader Raila Odinga's zones, which can cover him should Mt Kenya opt to vote elsewhere.
He cites areas like Kisii and Western Kenya, where the DP has a number of allies, and where he argues that the DP can get the vote to top up his Rift Valley vote and propel him to presidency.
"It is true that the contest will be much tougher for Ruto without the Mt Kenya support. But he can still win without the region because he seems to have eaten into Western Kenya, which has traditionally backed Raila. Ruto would still eat a bit of Kisii,” he told the Standard on Friday.
On his side, fellow commentator Herman Manyora advised the DP to only see Mt Kenya as a place to get additional votes, terming the region unreliable.
According to him, the DP should focus on other regions and not Mt Kenya, advising him to go for Raila's bedrocks and not include Central Kenya as his winning strategy.
He suggested that the region is prone to voter apathy, claiming that voters might not come out in large numbers to vote if one of them is not in the presidential ballot.
"When Ruto is doing his arithmetic, he should not factor in Mt Kenya. He can campaign as many times as he wants in the region, but remove central vote as part of his winning strategy,” he added.