Governor Susan Kihika back after month-long absence

Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen, Governor Susan Kihika, and DP Rigathi Gachagua at the Nakuru ASK Showground. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

Nakuru Governor Susan Kihika was among Rift Valley leaders who converged at the Nakuru Showground on Monday for an Alcoholism and Drug Abuse conference.

This was Kihika's first public appearance in Nakuru after a one-month absence that led to speculation about her whereabouts and health.

The event was attended by Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua among other leaders.

"You media people have now seen me, and I am okay," she told journalists who were jostling to take her pictures.

Her absence generated debate on various forums, including social media.

Before she d from the public limelight, the governor, on April 20 this year during the Eid ul-Fitr celebrations, joined the Muslim community in breaking their fasting.

On April 17, President William Ruto hosted governors at State House Nairobi, after which he flagged off oxygen cylinders to the counties.

Kihika stood steps behind Ruto on the front row with other governors, sandwiched between Anne Waiguru (Kirinyaga) to the left and Benjamin Cheboi (Baringo) to the right.

And 37 minutes into the press conference, Kihika signalled Waiguru, who nodded in agreement as she (Kihika) stepped behind governors who stood in the second row.

Three minutes later, Kihika disappeared from the view of cameras, immediately causing panic among the governors, some of whom rushed to her rescue.

The governors quickly moved back to their positions to avoid drawing much attention to her while the press conference was being televised live.

Today, during the conference at the Nakuru Showground, Kihika highlighted the dangers posed by illicit/illegal brews in her county, calling on security agencies, the clergy, and all players to come together and end the menace.

She said her administration was working on a proposed law to stem the spread of illicit brew, adding that the county government has streamlined the issuance of bar licenses.