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Olympic gold medal that gave village new lease of life

When the dazzling Faith Chepng’etich Kipyegon set the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro ablaze, she did not know that her gold medal would be the only thing that would trigger the supply of electricity to the little-known Ndabibit village in Nakuru County where she comes from.

The village has been plagued with darkness for nearly four decades since the residents settled there in the 1980s.

And when she finally jets into the country on Friday, Faith will not only receive a red carpet welcome but will also be stepping into a new look home as her father’s homestead has been connected to power supply thanks to her gold medal.

When she left the country for national duties in Rio, her village was in darkness and her father could not follow the games.

Moments after winning the gold medal in the wee hours of August 17, her father, Mr Samuel Koech Kipyegon, 56, had only one plea to President Uhuru Kenyatta.

“I urge President Uhuru Kenyatta to make sure our village is connected to electricity so that I can see my daughter Faith running and winning medals for Kenya,” said Mr Koech.

And his prayers were answered almost instantly as a day after his plea was exclusively highlighted by the Daily Nation, the Kenya Power team was on the ground dropping power line poles.


The construction of the power line to Faith father’s homestead took a record nine days and last Friday (August 26), Ndabibit village was a beehive of activities as jubilant residents flocked the homestead to witness the switching on of the electricity.

The ceremony was officiated by the Cabinet Secretary for Energy Charles Keter who was accompanied by the Kenya Power Managing Director Ben Chumo and Olkalou MP David Kiaraho.

“We thank Faith for delivering us from the powers of darkness because as long as we live we shall remember her and the gold she won because today our village has been connected to power because of her sterling performance at the Olympic Games,” said a neighbour Mr Benard Lang’at.

“I only thank God for giving me such a wonderful daughter who has transformed our village and I pray to God to give her strength and good health so that she could win more medals for Kenya,” said Mr Kipyegon.

The switching on of the electricity at Mzee Kipyegon homestead came with a lot of goodies. Following the exploits of her seventh born daughter, Samsung has pledged to supply him with a flat screen TV set while SuperSport will provide him with a decoder.

Mr Keter donated Sh100,000 to the family while M Kiaraho donated Sh10,000 for the purchase of an oven.

An official of the now disbanded National Olympic Committee of Kenya (Nock) also pledged to purchase a gas cooker.