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Sotik residents flock Joyce Laboso’s home in mourning

Wednesday July 31 2019

Joyce Laboso's home in Sotik

Residents sign a condolence book at the Late Bomet Governor Joyce Laboso's home in Sotik which has been a beehive of activities since her death on Monday evening in Nairobi. PHOTO | JOHN NJOROGE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

BAYA SAMUEL
By BAYA SAMUEL
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Sotik, the home of the fallen Bomet Governor Joyce Laboso, has been a beehive of activities since her death on Monday evening in Nairobi.

Neighbours have been streaming into the home to mourn their leader who will be buried on Saturday.

When we arrived at the home at around 10am Wednesday, inmates from a local prison were busy cutting firewood and clearing bushes.

Also, county employees were strategically placed around the compound to oversee the ongoing preparations.

POLICE GUARD

Armed police officers guarded the home in the environs of Sotik town, a constituency that Dr Laboso served as an MP before she vied for the governor’s seat.

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As the residents strolled into the homestead, most of their faces revealed the loss occasioned by the death of Dr Laboso, a woman they said was kind-hearted and had the love of the county at heart.

After an almost an hour deliberations, Sotik Sub-County Administrator Samuel Cheruyiot and the elders emerged from a meeting to address journalists.

"It is rather a sad day for us as the people of Sotik. The death of our madam Governor is a blow to us. We have gathered here just to plan for her send off. As you can see, there are a lot of preparations going on but we have not been briefed exactly on the next step after this," Mr Cheruiyot said.

BIG BLOW

Mr John Kitur, a former councillor, said he worked well with Governor Laboso when she was an MP and her death came as a big blow.

"You would work with her and realise her zeal in changing the lives of Sotik people when she was an MP and she followed the same when she became the governor. Her death is a big loss," said Mr Kitur.

Bomet African Inland Church (AIC) Bishop Hezron Korir said Dr Laboso was a dedicated leader whose vision lay in empowering the people of her county.

"I have come here to send my condolences over the death of our beloved governor. She was a woman who liked to listen to the plight of the Bomet people and it is sad that we have lost her," he said.

PATRON

By the time of her death, Governor Laboso was the patron of Kotabgor, a multi-million shillings self-help group that was founded by her sister Lorna Laboso who died in a plane crash in 2008.

At the homestead, we met the chairlady of the group, Ms Florence Mutai, who talked of the vision Dr Laboso had for the women of Bomet.

"To me, this is a great loss. She assisted us as women when she came as a patron to support our sacco that was founded by her late sister Lorna. Until her death, she was still our patron and she had big plans for this county. It is sad that she has gone this early," she said.

Some of the residents said that Dr Laboso used to frequent the home and mingled with residents in Sotik town.

"Sometimes you get news and then you wonder and get shocked. That is what exactly happened to me when I received the news,” said a resident.