William Samoei Ruto
DATE OF BIRTH
He was born in Sugoi, Uasin Gishu County in 1966.
Education background: Early schooling at Kamagut Primary, then joined Wareng Secondary School, followed by Kapsabet Boys High School for his A levels. He joined the University of Nairobi where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Botany and Zoology in 1990. He returned to same university years later and graduated with a Master of Science degree in 2011 and PhD in 2018.
Dr Ruto has served as Kenya’s deputy president since 2013 when he was elected as President Uhuru Kenyatta’s running mate. In October 2014, he served as acting President when Mr Kenyatta briefly relinquished power to attend to his criminal case at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, Netherlands. Mr Kenyatta’s charges were later dropped.
In 2011, he was named among the six individuals who planned and sponsored the 2007/08 post-election violence in which 1,200 people were killed and many others displaced over a disputed following a disputed presidential election. Dr Ruto was charged alongside journalist Joshua Arap Sang with crimes against humanity (murder, deportation or forcible transfer of population and persecution) during violence that followed the 2007 elections. The trial of Dr Ruto and Mr Sang opened on 10 September 2013.
He was a co-founder and key member of the infamous Youth for Kanu 1992 (YK92), a lobby group that campaigned for late President Daniel Moi in the 1992 general elections. Earlier, he had met Mr Moi, his political mentor, through his involvement in church activities.
He was first elected to Parliament in 1997 as MP for Eldoret North. Dr Ruto served as an assistant minister in the Office of the President from 1998 to 2002 when he was elevated to cabinet as Minister for Home Affairs following the sacking of George Saitoti by Mr Moi after disagreements over the 2002 succession. Dr Ruto has also served as Minister for Agriculture and Higher Education.
Dr Ruto opposed the referendum on the new Constitution in 2005 and 2010.
He set his eyes on the 2022 presidential election which he will contest on a UDA ticket under the Kenya Kwanza Alliance.