FROM POOR VILLAGE

Baringo grad wins prestigious Africa Surveyor Award

Cheating in quantity surveying is major contributor to corruption in construction - Komen wants to change that

In Summary

• Komen comes from poor and remote Komarir village in Baringo South

• Aspires to inspire young generation, improve honesty in quantity surveying and help communities solve land disputes. 

Baringo-born award winner Boaz Komen in his graduation gown at JKUAT University.
SURVEYING FUTURE: Baringo-born award winner Boaz Komen in his graduation gown at JKUAT University.
Image: JOSEPH KANGOGO

A 23-year-old Baringo man from a poor family has won the prestigious Gold Medal Award by the Africa Association of Quantity Surveyors.

Boaz Chepsergon Komen comes from a poor, sleepy Komarir village in Baringo South.

Komen is the first Kenyan to win the award. He was recognised by the AAQS General Assembly in October.

 

“My motivation has been to one day rewrite the history of my locality, Kamalel, to inspire the younger generation," Komen told the Star on Tuesday.

He also hopes to help communities solve land issues,

Correct quantity surveying is crucial in estimating the cost of construction. Corrupt people and firms frequently inflate quantities, hence, the value of the project.

Komen hopes to improve integrity in the profession.

He awaits the awards ceremony when the Covid-19 pandemic subsides.

"The winner impressed the selection panel by the breadth and depth of his performance in all categories - no mean achievement for a 23-year-old," the surveyors' body said.

Boaz Komen drinks mursik fermented milk from a calabash served by his mother Linah Chesire during graduation last year
HURRAY: Boaz Komen drinks mursik fermented milk from a calabash served by his mother Linah Chesire during graduation last year
Image: JOSEPH KANGOGO

Komen graduated last year with a First Class degree in Quantity Surveying from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology.

 

"Komen was selected for his academic excellence, impeccable character and community contributions," Institute of Quantity Surveyors of Kenya assistant executive secretary Wilson Chelego said.

Komen was born into a poor household. He studied at Sabor Primary School in Marigat, Baringo South.

He joined Alliance High School, which he calls a "wonderful opportunity". That opened the door to JKUAT in 2016.

His academic performance was excellent throughout. He took part in community activities, intramural activities and demonstrated leadership.

Since graduation, Komen has been working with Nairobi-based Efil Enterprises Ltd as an assistant quantity surveyor.

The Africa Association of Quantity Surveyors based in South Africa aims to unite quantity surveyors' bodies and foster cooperative, intellectual, cultural, educational and scientific ties.

Komen quotes actress Lupita Nyong’o as saying, "Everyone's dreams are valid irrespective of their background."

“I was brought up where quantity surveying is confused with land surveying," Komen said.

“I was so elated, grateful and humbled to hear such great news. I could not believe I was being recognised for such a noble award ... This took God’s enabling hand as I believe there were many candidates."

The award seeks to promote the industry to young professionals and recognise the contribution of young quantity surveyors to the industry and the future of the profession.

Komen also thanked his parents and siblings for their tireless support, and his friends at the JKUAT.

(Edited by V. Graham)