FAILED TO MEET UHURU

Ex-chief who trekked 354km to meet Uhuru over stadium returns home empty-handed

Malatit lost 3kg after his 11-day walk.

In Summary

• He drank tea and ate chapattis and honey, in addition to drinking at least four litres of water daily.

• He said friends of goodwill supported him by sending him some money for upkeep while some met him physically along the way to encourage him.

Baringo retired Chief Joseph Malatit who trekked 354km to Nairobi landed back empty-handed at the stalled Kabarnet town on Monday.
Baringo retired Chief Joseph Malatit who trekked 354km to Nairobi landed back empty-handed at the stalled Kabarnet town on Monday.
Image: JOSEPH KANGOGO

A former assistant chief from Baringo who trekked 354km to Nairobi to raise funds for the stalled Kabarnet stadium has returned home empty-handed.

Joseph Malatit's hopes to meet President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House were thwarted after he was blocked by 200 armed security officers.

“The officers manning the gate ordered me back saying the president was held up in a meeting with other VIPs,” Malatit, 61, said.

The former chief, who lost 3kg from his original 76kg body weight, traveled back home on Monday.

He addressed a handful of residents and journalists at the stalled Kabarnet stadium.

The former Kimoso sub-location assistant chief started his 11-day walk from his Eron rural home in Baringo Central on August 24 and completed it on September 6.

Malatit said he also did not get to meet Sports CS Amina Mohamed as she wasn’t in her office at the time.

“I was forced to drop my well-articulated letter in the respective offices though I'm not so sure if they will be handed to the destined bosses,” he said.

He also sought in vain the attention of National Olympic Committee of Kenya president Paul Tergat and Baringo Central MP Joshua Kandie.

Malatit's journey had been highlighted in the news.

He drank tea and ate chapattis and honey, in addition to drinking at least four litres of water daily.

He said friends of goodwill supported him by sending him some money for upkeep while some met him physically along the way to encourage him.

He braved cold and hot weather conditions, as well as the risk of being attacked by animals on the way.

“I don’t blame anybody for any failure, my mind only focuses on completion of the stadium to benefit my talented grandsons and granddaughters,” Malatit said.

Message to President 

Malatit said he had a singular message for President Uhuru Kenyatta - a request for funds to complete the Kabarnet stadium.

“Uhuru was a close ally of the former late President Daniel Toroitich arap Moi, he is now winding up his second term but then which landmark  legacy shall he leave for us if he doesn’t  complete the stadium?” he said.

After failing to meet Uhuru, Malatit later met Baringo Senator Gideon Moi, the son of the late president Moi, but says he was not promised anything.

“He just branded me a hero for braving through the teething politics back home-Baringo - to shine all the way to Nairobi,” he said.

Malatit said the two discussed nothing to do with the stadium and just had a discussion between two friends.

Successful

However, Malatit said he was able to meet the Safaricom head of corporate affairs Stephen Chege who sounded positive about his mission.

“He actually promised to take my plight for a discussion with the top management then see how they can allocate some money to kick start reconstruction of the stadium,” he said.

Malatit further hinted at another plan, whose details he did not reveal.

Stalled stadium

Construction of Kabarnet stadium was commissioned by the former Governor Benjamin Cheboi back in 2014, but later stalled  due to lack of funds.

However incumbent Governor Stanley Kiptis defended the stoppage blaming it on lack of documentation of the stadium land, saying some people earlier approached him claiming ownership.

But former Governor Cheboi’s ex-officials dispute the claims, saying the land was already being demarcated as a public utility, adding the stadiums works were already at 70 per cent completion.

Currently the abandoned stadium has been turned into a den for immorality, illicit brew takers and a perching ground for love birds. The field is also littered with bottles of second generation liquor and sachets of condoms.

The steeply dug drenches have also caused the death of one person and another one was injured.

 

Edited by CM