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Controversial Statements Gachagua Has Made Since Becoming Deputy President

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File image of DP Rigathi Gachagua

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has been involved in several controversies since taking office in September 2022.
Below are four incidents that have made the second-in-command a topic of discussion across the country.

Return of the Shamba system

During a speech in Baringo County in September 2022, the deputy president rallied support for the return of the Shamba system, under which communities living near forests are allocated forest plots and allowed to farm.

DP Gachagua later claimed he was misquoted after the remarks sparked a heated debate online.

“When I was in Baringo, I announced that we have a serious afforestation programme. There is a lot of land within the forest reserve that has been earmarked for tree planting and we are going to mobilise farmers in the old spirit to help us plant new trees in those areas where there are no trees and take care of them as they farm until the trees are old,” he said.

Government is a Company

On February 2023, the DP claimed that the Kenya Kwanza government is a company where those who voted for it will reap big while those who voted against it will not get much.
“This government is a company that has shares. There are owners who have most of the shares and those who have few while others have none,” said Gachagua.
His comments did not go down well with the opposition, which called on the president to come out and clarify his deputy’s views.

Tigers in Kenya

In September 2023, Gachagua sparked an online debate during an official visit to Colombia after he said there were tigers in Kenya.

“If you come to invest in Kenya, we have many tourism facilities. We have rare species of wildlife like elephants, lions, buffaloes, and tigers,” Gachagua said.

However, he clarified that in the Kikuyu community, leopards and tigers are the same.

El Nino funds

On 21 November, Gachagua was in the news again after he said the national government had released Sh10 billion to counties to mitigate the effects of the ongoing El Niño rains.
Mombasa Governor Abdulswamad Nassir and his Siaya counterpart James Orengo challenged the DP, saying county governments had not received any money.

The Council of Governors led by Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru also condemned Gachagua’s remarks.

Also Read: Government Apologizes To Kenyans Over El Nino Confusion 

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