West Pokot County Commissioner Apollo Okello has commended area residents for upholding peace before, during and after the electioneering period.
Speaking during the swearing-in ceremony for incoming West Pokot governor Simon Kachapin and his deputy Robert Komole at Kishaunet ASK Showground in Kapenguria on Thursday, Okello said the residents exhibited maturity despite the tough political competitions in the various seats in the region.
He hailed the peaceful transfer of power to the new administration and called for increased collaboration between the county and the national government for sustainable development in the region.
He called on governor Kachapin to call to table all the political leaders irrespective of whether they won or not in the August 9, 2022 elections to discuss on how to spearhead great development of the county.
“It is a privilege I served with you shortly before you handed over the power in 2017 to the now outgoing governor John Lonyangapuo. You are now the new head and you should bring together all political leaders to forge the way forward for greater development for this county,” Okello advised governor Kachapin.
The CC assured maximum collaboration from the national administration within the county adding that the Ministry of Interior and National Coordination will continue discharging its mandate of ensuring that there is enough security in the region.
Meanwhile, the outgoing governor Lonyangapuo congratulated his successor for winning back the seat which he had handed to him in 2017.
He termed the win as a victory for the West Pokot County reiterating that the peaceful campaigns and election was a landmark history in the country.
“West Pokot County has set a perfect example of how peaceful elections should be since no one lost their life throughout the grueling political period. I have handed over peacefully to you the power that you gave me in 2017 when I left from the senate,” stated Lonyangapuo.
He explained that the grudges and hatred that might have existed during the campaign period must end calling on the residents to forgive each other and yearn for a bright future.
“If there is any way that I might have offended any one I seek for forgiveness and for those who offended me I have forgiven you. There is need to forget the bitter past since in our culture one should criticise their own parents,” he posed.
He lauded the residents for the support they accorded him for the five years he has been in office asking the new governor to bring on board all people since leadership is participatory.
He appealed to the residents to understand that West Pokot is among the marginalised regions hence a need for concerted efforts and patience in uplifting it in terms of development.
“Our county has neighbours within the country and the neighbouring country Uganda. We should embrace a peaceful co-existence for prosperity of our region that is endowed with hidden treasures,” advised Lonyangapuo.
Kachapin won the seat on United Democratic Alliance (UDA) by garnering 86,476 votes against Lonyangapuo’s 84,610 votes under the Kenya Union Party (KUP).
By Richard Muhambe