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WILLIAM RUTO: From School Teacher To President

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William Ruto the president-elect of Kenya has been the Vice president from 2013 till date alongside President Uhuru Kenyatta.

He was born William Kipchirchir Samoei Arap Ruto on 21 December 1966 (age 55) in the village of Sugoi, Uasin Gishu County to the family of Mr. and Mrs. Cheruiyot.

Early education:
Mr. Ruto started his education at the Kamagut Primary school before proceeding to Wareng Secondary School for his Ordinary Level education and Kapsabet Boys, for his Advanced Levels.
He then went on to obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Botany and Zoology from the University of Nairobi, graduating in 1990. Ruto later enrolled for an MSc in Plant Ecology, graduating in 2011. He also got his Ph.D from the same university in 2018.

After graduating from the university, Mr. Ruto taught at Sirgoi and Kamagut Secondary Schools in the North Rift. He, at the same time, founded African Venture Tours and Hotels in 1990.

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Political career:
Mr. Ruto started his political career as a youth organiser for a presidential candidate in the early 90s.

In 1992, he joined the party ‘Kenya African National Union’ (KANU), in their election campaign to support the party’s founder, Daniel Arap Moi.

He was a candidate of the KANU and entered the full political sphere of Kenya, after he was appointed as a Member of Parliament for the Eldoret North constituency in the year 1997.

In 2002, he was elected as the Assistant Minister of Home Affairs, and in the same year, he was again elected to the Parliament.

Ruto became the Secretary General of ‘Kenya African National Union’ party in the year 2005.

William announced in the year 2006, that he would contest the Presidential elections, which was to commence the next year. However, his decision was not supported by his comrades KANU party. He tried to seek nomination candidate in the ‘Orange Democratic Movement’ (ODM), but failed.

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In 2007, William parted ways with the  KANU party and resigned the secretarial post he held.

In the presidential elections of 2007, there were differences in the decision as the election commission announced the ‘National Rainbow Coalition’ candidate, Mwai Kibaki as the president, while the exit polls showed another Kenyan politician and candidate for the presidential election, Raila Odinga, as the winner.

However, Kibaki was elected as the President of Kenya and soon after, both Kibaki and Odinga came to a mutual understanding and decided to form a coalition cabinet.

The coalition cabinet was finally formed in 2008 and William Ruto was elected as its Agricultural Minister.

Then he was shifted to the Higher Education Ministry from the Ministry of Agriculture in the year 2010 where he resigned his position in 2011 to pursue a master’s degree in Environmental Science.

For the 2013 general elections in Kenya, William Ruto along with Kenyatta formed the coalition party named ‘Jubilee Alliance,’ in order to contest the presidential election jointly.

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In the 2013 Presidential Elections, Uhuru Kenyatta was voted as the President and William Ruto was elected as the Deputy President of Kenya.

He left the Jubilee alliance in 2021 to join the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) to contest the 2022 presidential elections.

John Adoyi, PBA Journalism Mentee
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