Uasin Gishu county governor Jackson Mandago has been faulted for his nomination of Julius Kitur as a member of Eldoret municipality board.
The non-Kalenjin residents are particularly outraged. The functions of municipality board include management of towns through upgrading of facilities for the service of the residents.
Eldoret municipality board is made up of four members and five representatives from various organisations namely Uasin Gishu Jua Kali Association, Uasin Gishu Urban Forum, Kenya Private Sector Association, Kenya Alliance of Resident Association and Association of Professional Societies in East Africa.
The residents are unhappy with Mandago’s choice based on the nominee’s past. Kitur’s involvement in 2007/8 postelection violence is still vivid in the minds of non-Kalenjin residents who lost property.
He is also associated with a militia outfit Okoa Town which was formed in
2017 to target, profile and arrest as well frustrate the non-Kalenjins in Eldoret town. In 2017 non-Kalenjin candidates for various seats were threatened to scare them from vying in the county. Kitur unsuccessfully vied for Turbo parliamentary seat in 2013 and 2017. During vetting MCAs queried the nominee’s stand on non-Kalenjin communities residing in the county.
He failed to answer pertinent questions concerning his activities in the past. Cheptiret MCA Gilbert Tenai drew the attention of the panel to a discrepancy in nominee’s names in the academic papers and birth certificate. Governor Mandago’s desire to control the activities of the board is driven by huge World Bank funding of the initiative.
World Bank has given the board Sh637 million and a further Sh20 million for public participation activities in nine wards of Uasin Gishu County. MCAs Peter Chomba (Huruma) and Francis Muya (Langas) were particularly not convinced with Kitur’s suitability to serve the residents of the cosmopolitan town with fairness given his past.