West Pokot Deputy Governor Nicholas Atudonyang. [David Gichuru, Standard]

West Pokot Deputy Governor Nicholas Atudonyang has defended his legacy, despite being away for four years after he was elected.

Speaking on Spice FM yesterday, the deputy governor said despite his absence the county achieved a lot compared to other counties.

He said he saved the county's resources by not drawing a deputy governor's salary.

Dr Atudonyang studied at Tenges High School in Baringo and Chewoyet High School in West Pokot.

“I joined the University of Nairobi before going to the United States to further my studies and pursue a career in medicine,” he said.

During the interview, Dr Atudonyang said he never lost the connection with the West Pokot people and continuously championed the improvement of residents' living standards.

"West Pokot is a marginalised area. Schools are not that good, but we still have to work with the little resources available so that we can be better off," he said.

Dr Atudonyang added that devolution has given marginalised counties a chance to develop and catch up with the rest of the country.

West Pokot Governor John Lonyangapuo addressing the press at Kapenguria, August 2021. [File, Standard]

His move to vie for governor is one way of changing West Pokot politics, he said.

The deputy governor said he wasn't a first-time politician. In 2007 he vied for an MP seat and lost.

“I prioritise the needs of the people and education remains my focus. We campaigned for Kanu with my boss in 2017, and I still believe in the philosophy of the Kanu party,” he added.

Dr Atudonyang said he supported the Health department by securing equipment donations from the US and secured funds.

“In 2017, I discovered mortality rates can be prevented through having enough equipment. Maternal deaths were the highest, and I had to look for ultrasound machines and dispatched them to the county,” he said.

Dr Atudonyang added that despite his absence he oversaw the improvement from wooden beds to proper hospital beds that further reduced the mortality rates.

He said he mobilised more than Sh250 million worth of equipment and training services.

“We were in touch and that's why the people of West Pokot county still trust me. So far I haven't heard any complaints concerning my leadership.” 

Dr Atudonyang went on: “The noise is expected in politics, and it's something I am willing to carry."

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