The history and little-known facts of Kapkatet stadium

Kapkatet stadium serves as a hub for cultural, religious, and political activities for members of the Kipsigis people in the South Rift region.

It has traditionally been the location where community members make significant pronouncements on local, regional, and global matters.

Since Kenya’s independence, presidents and presidential candidates have been garlanded and promoted as the community’s elders in traditional ceremonies

The traditional blessings and installation of Jomo Kenyatta, Daniel Moi, and President Uhuru Kenyatta as Kipsigis community elders earned them political points.

“Historically, the Kipsigis community has been obligated to support the candidate and political party named for support once a political declaration has been made at Kapkatet.

A presidential candidate can canvass the South Rift region to get support from locals, but if they don’t cap it off with a rally at Kapkatet, they won’t be taken seriously.

Members of the community make significant regional and national political statements during kapkatet that have an impact on how people vote in general elections.

The local Tengecha complex schools are named for famed senior leader Kipsang arap Tengecha, whose administration saw the stadium set aside in the 1940s as a public utility area.

Mzee Tengecha was the grandfather of Bureti MP Kiptergech Mutai and the father of former Lands permanent secretary Joseah Sang.

Despite its historic and political  significance, the Kapkatet stadium has been dormant for more than 15 years, with the facility reduced to a cattle grazing ground.

It is estimated that the national government have pumped approximately Sh400 million in the project for the past 15 years but progress has stalled, with only a perimeter wall, a partially leveled playground and two sheds funded by the Bureti Constituency Development Fund (CDF) and multinational company James Finlay.