Kakamega County are the overall winners of the just concluded 96th edition of National Kenya Music and Cultural Festivals at Wote in Makueni County.
The declaration by the Festival’s Chairperson Prof. Emily Akuno sparked wild celebrations in the hall from Kakamega County officers, participants and other County supporters marking the end of a successful and exciting ten day national event held in the Eastern region County.
Kakamega’s march to victory saw them register 268 entries in this year’s edition and despite presenting fewer participants compared to previous years, the Green Jewels shook off stiff competition from Uasin Gishu (357) and County zero zero one, Mombasa (109), to emerge winners with 441 points.
The CECM for Social Services, Sports, Youth, Gender and Culture Mr Mophat Mandela who spoke to the participants, through the Director for Culture Ms Gaudencia Otipa, passed H.E Governor Fernandes Barasa’s congratulatory message and gratitude to the County representatives.
Mr Mandela mentioned the preliminaries that were conducted by the Ministry in the Sub-Counties culminating to the County Gala where the best performers were selected to represent Kakamega as the cause of the outstanding results in Makueni County this year.
The Secretary of Administration at the State Department for Culture and Heritage Herman Shambi who represented the Cabinet Secretary Hon. Aisha Jumwa at the closing ceremony asserted the importance of music and cultural practitioners in enhancing the spirit of nationhood. Prof. Akuno on her part revealed that Taita Taveta, Garissa and Nakuru Counties have already presented their bids to host the 97th edition. She also specially recognised and commended Kakamega County’s Sifa Melodies for shining during the festival and raising the bar too high in the festival.