West pokot County
Its capital is Kapenguria town.
According to the 2009 Kenya Population and Housing Census the population was 512,690 with a population density of 56 people per Km2 and an annual growth rate of 3.1%. Age Distribution was; 0-14 years 52.2% with the economically productive age of 15-64 years standing at 45.1% and over 65 years at 2.7%.
These include the Nasolot Game Reserve which was gazetted in 1979 and consists of 9,200 hectares of beautifully rugged land. It is located to the north of Mount Melo which stands at over 3,000M and offers spectacular views of the plains below, Nasolot hill – a rocky outcrop at the periphery of the reserve and wildlife which include elephant, lesser kudu, bushbuck, duiker, lion, leopard, Kirks dik-dik, spotted hyena, jackal, impala, Sykes monkey, beisa and fringe-eared oryx, waterbuck, olive baboon, buffalo, gazelle and hippo.
The other attraction is Kapenguria Prison Museum which is played a major role in Kenya’s political history and freedom struggle. Six leading nationalists including Mzee Jomo Kenyatta – Kenya’s first president, Kungu Karumba, Fred Kubai, Paul Ngei, Bildad Kaggia and Achieng Oneko were arrested in 1952, tried in 1952-3 and imprisoned thereafter. The trial and imprisonment happened at Kapenguria. All of them have since passed on.
Rainfall varies from 400mm in the lowlands to 1,500mm in the highlands per annum. Temperature ranges from a minimum of 10°C to a maximum of 30°C annually.
The total length of all classified roads in the county is 1197Km with bitumen surface covering 151Km, gravel surface covering 349Km and 697Km being surface.
Education and Literacy
As at 2007, the County had 318 Primary schools with an enrolment of 105,452 pupils and a teacher to pupil ratio of 1:50 and 34 Secondary schools with an enrolment of 9,897 pupils and a teacher to pupil ratio of 1: 36.
There are 2 Commercial Banks and 3 Micro-Finance institutions.
West Pokot County has 31 health facilities with 1 District Hospital, 27 Dispensaries and 3 Health Centres.
The most prevalent diseases in the county are malaria, respiratory tract infections and skin infections.
Notable Hospitals: Kapenguria District Hospital.
With the adoption of the new constitution in 2010 which ushered in the devolved system of governance, the Governor is the Executive authority in the County together with his deputy, the Senator is to represent the County at the Senate and through the affirmation of women and youth rights, the Woman Representative is to represent the County’s women and youth issues at the National Assembly.
GOVERNOR: JOHN KROP LONYANG’APUO
DEPUTY GOVERNOR: NICHOLAS OWON KPAR ATUDONYANG
SENATOR: SAMUEL LOSURON POGHISIO
WOMEN REPRESENTATIVE: LILIAN CHEPTOO TOMITOM
West Pokot County has four (4) constituencies divided into 20 electoral wards. Kapenguria and Kacheliba Constituencies have 6 wards each while Sigor and Pokot South Constituencies have 4 wards each.
Agriculture is the major economic activity and backbone of West Pokot County. Major agricultural food crops grown are maize, potatoes and onions while cash crops are pyrethrum, coffee and tea.
Another practice is nomadic pastoralism with beef and dairy cattle, sheep, goats, camels and chicken being reared.
Others are mining and commercial businesses.