Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen has denied being heckled during a football tournament in Baringo on November 26, 2023 despite a widely circulated video showing him being booed.
The heckling occurred during the men’s finals, which were eventually postponed due to protests by Baringo Youth FC from Kabarnet, Baringo Central.
Murkomen explained that the team contested their loss against Chemogoch FC from Mogotio, leading to a dispute that the officials struggled to resolve. The Baringo Central team, being the home team with a majority of fans, expressed their dissatisfaction, directing their frustrations at Football Kenya Federation (FKF) officials, particularly one Mr. Ruto.
“The players and the fans poured their frustrations on FKF officials, especially one Mr. Ruto, whom they felt was not addressing their concerns,” Murkomen clarified.
Reflecting on the incident, Murkomen acknowledged the emotional nature of sports, especially football, which he described as a beautiful and popular game capable of fostering peace. Despite the disruption, he reiterated his commitment to promoting the positive aspects of sports and its potential to unite communities.
“Sports can be emotive, but football is a beautiful and popular game that can be used to foster peace. A friend who followed the incident joked that we should stick to athletics,” Murkomen commented.
This incident follows recent public controversies involving Murkomen, including a public spat with Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei over alleged favoritism towards Chinese contractors in road construction at the expense of local workers.
The heckling incident in Baringo occurs just a week after Energy Cabinet Secretary Davis Chirchir was similarly heckled at an event in Bomet, even in the presence of President William Ruto. The incidents highlight the heightened tensions and public scrutiny faced by government officials during public engagements.