Elders back senator for kingpin
They slammed another group that had rejected Lonyangapuo being made community spokesman and say he has fought for the rights of the Pokot
Some elders in West Pokot county have supported the recent installation of Senator John Lonyangapuo as the community’s kingpin and spokesman.
On Tuesday another group, the Council of Elders, denounced the installation which took place last weekend in Baringo county. They said Lonyangapuo is too young to be given the position.
One group led by William Lopetakoue said it was right for elders from Baringo to conduct the ceremony in Baringo instead of West Pokot, because there is no council of elders in the county.
“No one can claim that he is the council of elders. The time for choosing the council of elders has not come. The court ruled there is no council of elders and fresh elections should be conducted,” he said.
Lopetakoue said the ceremony takes place every year in the same place.
“The late Francis Lotodo was installed in Baringo, even former President Moi was installed at the same place. The ceremony is final and we can’t go against them,” he said.
Lopetakoue thanked the Baringo elders for recognising Lonyangapuo’s efforts in fighting for the community.
“The title is not given to just anybody. It’s given to somebody who has been consistently fighting for the rights of the community. You don’t beg for it. The elders are the ones who recognise your efforts,” he said.
The elders said that only four people have been installed in the history of the Pokot community to hold the position.
“They are Lengotung in 1830, who saved Pokots, Senior Chief Kamolikapel Ngoleyo when the whites wanted to finish us, the late Cabinet minister Francis Lotodo, for saving cattle that remained in the Amaya area,” he said. And now Lonyangapuo.
They said those opposing the installation of doing it for political reasons.
“We have heard that other elders are against it. Whom did they want to be installed? We thank the elders from Baringo for giving respect to our son and leaving theirs. It means they have faith in him,” said Lopetakoue.
Moses Cheparer said the elders have power to give the honour to anybody they see as leader.
Daniel Lopole said, “All the four subcounties have accepted that Lonyangapuo is our leader. We are surprised how a few elders from Kapenguria are acting.”