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WILLIAM RUTO (L) AND BISHOP ANYOLO (R) [PHOTO | COURTESY]

Truth on Ruto’s Sh4M car gift to Bishop Anyolo; Raila says Pope ordered it be returned

Kisumu Diocese Archbishop Phillip Anyolo donated a Ksh4 million vehicle he was gifted by Deputy President William Ruto during his [Archbishop Anyolo’s] installation early January, 2019.

Mr Ruto, who attended the January 12 ceremony, gave Archbishop Anyolo a Mitsubishi Pajero 2012 model.

And it has now emerged that Archbishop Anyolo ordered that the vehicle be channeled to another institution, which would benefit from it.

Speaking to Citizen on Saturday at Nyeri, Archbishop Anyolo said by the time the DP was gifting him the sport utility vehicle (SUV), he was already “contented”.

Archbishop Anyolo says he uses a Toyota Land Cruiser V8 that the Catholic believers in Kisumu gifted him on his installation day.

“The institution where I donated the Pajero is free to sell the vehicle and use proceeds from the sale to embetter the society. I also urge the government to convert vehicles impounded at the Mombasa Port into money, which would be used to improve the welfare of the needy. The State currently disposes off vehicles whose owners are unable to raise the importation tax,” said Archbishop Anyolo.

Occupants and staff at the Kisumu Parish, where Archbishop Anyolo stays, say they have never spotted the Ruto gift within the premises.

These revelations come on the back of claims by ODM leader Raila Odinga that Pope Francis directed Archbishop Anyolo’s team to return the Mitsubishi Pajero gift to its giver.

“Public funds are being looted daily yet poor Kenyans are suffering. Every day, the prices of commodities are rising while graft perpetrators, who are known to the public, run to churches with stolen money.

“Recently, during the installation of Archbishop of Catholic Diocese of Kisumu, someone took a vehicle to the bishop as a gift. When the Pope was informed that the Archbishop had received a car gift, he [Pope Francis] ordered that the vehicle be returned. And, true to his instruction, the car was returned because it was acquired from proceeds of corruption.

“We know where that person stays, what he earns and what his wife earns. Where does he get the millions of shillings that he dishes out in churches? A time has come when every corrupt person should carry his own cross,” said Raila Odinga on Saturday, March 2, during the burial of former senior chief Daudi Owino Olaka at Lifunga Kobiero Village in Ugenya Constituency, Siaya County.

Archbishop Anyolo has, however, refuted claims that Pope Francis instructed him to return the vehicle.

Archbishop Anyolo is also the chairperson of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB).

(Additional reporting by George Amolo in Siaya County and Laura Otieno in Kisumu County)

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