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'President Ruto' not exactly president

07 October 2014, 14:38 William Korir

Nairobi - William Ruto is the acting president of Kenya but he does not have the power that a normal president possesses.

Ruto was appointed president after Uhuru Kenyatta stepped aside Monday to attend his trial at the International Criminal Court as a civilian.

Ruto assumed the presidential motorcade and office upon his ascension but unlike the furore surrounding his new position, he is not exactly president of Kenya.

For example, he cannot make high ranking public appointments like Supreme and High Court judges, diplomats and such persons.

He too cannot hire or fire in the public domain and also cannot give presidential decree on the release of convicted criminals and other crimes.

However, he will chair cabinet meetings and take security briefs and if need be, he can also order for security operations.

" He is more of a custodian to the presidency in the current set-up than anything else. He is truly an acting boss and nothing else", political analyst Michael Njenga said.

" His role is limited and that makes sense because the president truly has the final say in most public appointments and similar cases", he added.

Read also: Ruto officially takes over State House

On whether there is a vacuum to exploit the presidency in the current state, Njenga says there is very little to bring up in this case.

" There is very little to do because the legitimate president is still alive and he is not in any distress. If there was a constitutional crisis, he would just re-assume power immediately".

" The issue comes up when he is not in a state that will allow him to perform his duties. That is where we could have a crisis", he adds.

Uhuru is expected back in the country Thursday after the ICC conference Wednesday.

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