From the pits to the palace: The rise of Linet Chepkorir ‘Toto’
Power and influence did not come easy for 24-year-old Bomet county Women Representative Linet Chepkorir popularly known as ‘Toto’.
Toto is a true definition of a grass-to-grace success story.
Having campaigned on a motorbike to clinch victory in the August 9, 2022, general election, Toto’s hard work, grit and determination have earned her a sit at the table with the big boys.
On her recent trip to Rwanda where she accompanied Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua, Toto stole the show.
Mr Gachagua proudly saying, “I came with one of the miracles in our country, a little young girl, 24 years old and was elected as the Woman Rep of Bomet county defeating a mature experienced woman.”
On her part, Toto tweeted, “This morning, I joined other leaders in accompanying DP Rigathi Gachagua to Rwanda for the Youth Connect Africa Summit.
Looking forward to a fruitful engagement with other stakeholders.”
This morning, I joined other leaders in accompanying DP Rigathi Gachagua to Rwanda for the Youth Connect Africa Summit. Looking forward to a fruitful engagement with other stakeholders. pic.twitter.com/U4YqFGqXwi
— Hon. Toto Iinet (@T0T0Iinet) October 13, 2022
Being elected under the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party, Toto is the youngest politician in the 13th Parliament.
She scooped 242,775 votes with her opponents Dr Alice Milgo and Ms Beatrice Chepkemoi garnering 43180 and 4639 votes respectively.
There were 8 candidates seeking the same position.
Coming from a humble background, Toto depended on handouts and donations from well-wishers to fund her campaign.
Additionally, she undertook odd jobs to sustain herself through working as a house help, selling mitumba and chips mwitu before joining politics.
In a past interview, the 24-year-old said, “I was employed in Bomet town, I used to sell mitumba clothes for a month, and from there I went to sell chips, I used to earn two hundred shillings per day.
From there I was a maid for a month then I thought of vying for Women Rep.”
The alumnus of Chuka University, Toto previously noted that she has had to work her way to the top.
She shared that she was locked out for about an hour by security officers at then Deputy President William Ruto’s Karen home where he was hosting UDA aspirants.
The officers had mistaken her for a village girl who had strayed into the meeting but when she produced an electronic ticket showing she had paid the Sh6,000 registration fees for party aspirants, she was let in.
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