County Celebrates Mashujaa In The Scenic Laikipia North

Laikipia County took the Mashujaa Day celebrations to Ilpolei, the first of such fete being held in Laikipia North Sub-County.
The event, set on a venue beside the tall, spectacular granite Il Polei boulder, saw the county celebrate its heroes and heroines, mostly those from Laikipia North, for excelling in their respective fields. The governors speech brought to the fore the incredible, untold stories of individuals and groups from local communities who have defied odds to shine in their areas of practice.
Some of the individuals recognized are Saidimu Kaparo, a Kenya Airways captain who continues to inspire young Laikipians that only the sky is the limit. Doreen Cheptoo from Lonyiek is first female graduate from the Pokot community and Dr. Christine Lekurtut, a doctor of medicine and first female Samburu Doctor who is working at the county are all role models to the young girls from the pastoral communities.
Also celebrated were the Maasai Cricket Warriors who have travelled the world over to champion for the eradication of female genital mutilation practices among the Maasai community.
Also recognized were people and groups who have continued to make an impact on education, commerce, sports, conservation and sustainable agricultural practices in a region previously thought to be marginalized. For instance, Joseph Lontunyoi is championing the reversing losses to gains from the invasive opuntia cactus. Here is the full speech by H.E. the Governor:
Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Fellow Laikipians.
We are gathered here today to celebrate our heroes and heroines.
Mashujaa day gives us an opportunity to celebrate those among us who are doing exemplary things. Let me mention a few:
In music and arts our young men; Lemarti and King Meshami are using their voice to promote peace and cohesion as well as showing us all that we can use talent as a self-employment option.
The world renowned Maasai Cricket warriors through sports have brought such great pride upon us the people of Laikipia.
Marathon runner Lucy ole Sempe from Kimanjo finished in 4th place in last years Lewa Safaricom marathon shows us that it is indeed possible for us as a community to venture into sports.
One of our professionals, Joseph Lentunyoi, is using his permaculture knowledge and skills towards gainful use of the problematic opuntia and creating women empowerment programs through sustainable agriculture. Joseph works with women groups such as:
- Natuum women group in Soit Oudo which is involved in opuntia eradication efforts through Jane Kingau and Jane Sarioyo.
- Nabulu women group which grows and exports aloe vera (SUGUROI) and its products
Nasela Group in Arjiju does rotation farming and also plants grass for hay. This group is inspiring the community to venture into profitable agriculture.
Mugie livestock Program in Sosian ward together with young Pokot and Samburu men have prospered in livestock fattening and trading. Darwin Rinamuto and Moses Lodungokiok both of Samburu decent have made a mark in the community as livestock farmers.
Twala Cultural Women are using culture to sustain livelihoods through a tourism venture (their centre is not far from here) and are also engaged in the export production and export of aloe vera and its products and in large scale honey production.
The lady involved, Rosemary Nenini Putunoi is our champion.
Based out of Rumuruti, herbalist Consolata Morungale Lokachoni is another champion.
We have a few long serving teachers in our midst. Among them is Mwalimu Joseph Rana who has taught a few generations of Laikipians.
The AET program for teenage mothers to go back to school after childbirth is another key undertaking. Musul group ranch donated a parcel of land and a classroom to facilitate the program. We celebrate them.
A young lady from Sosian Ward, Doreen Cheptoo Samali is the only Laikipian Pokot girl to graduate from the university with a Bachelors in Education degree. She also conducts mentorship programmes to encourage young Pokot girls to pursue education. She hails from Nagum.
We have Doctors in the community. Dr.Christine Lekurtut who is Samburu, Dr.Alfred Mosiany who is Maasai, Dr.Timothy Panga who is Pokot and Dr. Lenai Kamario who is Turkana.
Our very own Engineer Jerosa Kimiri (scholarship for both undergraduate at Moi Univesrty and Masters Degree at Erasmus University in the Netherlands).
Aviation Captain Saidimu Kaparo who is working with Kenya Airways.
Ilngwesi community lodge is thriving on conservation and tourism through the able stewardship of facility manager Patrick Leresi
All these men and women are our modern day Mashujaa. And we celebrate them.
God Bless Laikipia,
God Bless Kenya.
Thank You.

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