Bungoma County is located in the western part of Kenya and is bordered by Uganda to the west. Its headquarters are based in Bungoma Town. The name Bungoma originated from the name ‘engoma’- A Bukusu Word for Drums.
However, there are other versions of stories explaining the origin of the name Bungoma. One states that many years ago, the area was occupied by the Bungomek, A clan of the Sabaot tribe.
They were driven out by the Bukusu who later occupied the area but the name Bungoma was retained in reference to the occupation of the Bungomek.
The third story states that the area was inhabited by a Kalenjin subtribe called the ‘Bangot’, and the local Bukusu referred to the area as a place of drums thus the name Bungoma was derived from that.
Farming is the main activity in the County. Sugarcane is the main crop grown. Nzoia Sugar Factory, one of the largest Sugar mills in the country is located in the county. Apart rom Sugarcane, Maize is also produced in the County, mainly for subsistence use. Other farming activities in the county include Dairy farming, poultry rearing, Millet and Sorghum faring.
Christianity is the main religion practised in the County. The Roan Catholic Church, Friends Church and the Seventh Day Adventists are the main denominations in the town. Muslim is also a religion practised in the County. A few of the County’s population still practise the African traditional religion
Population and Administration
Bungoma County has a population of 1,663,898 people (Kenyan Census 2019). It is divided into 11 Sub-Counties namely: Bumula, Bungoma Central, Bungoma East, Bungoma North, Bungoma South, Cheptais, Kimilili, Mt.Elgon, Bungoma West, Tongaren and Webuye West.
Following the promulgation of the 2010 Kenyan Constitution, Bungoma became a county with H.E. Hon Kenneth Lusaka being its first Governor. He however lost the 2017 gubernatorial elections to H.E. Hon Wycliffe Wangamati who’s the county’s current Governor.
Bungoma County has several educational institutions including major Secondary Schools in the country. They include, Friends School Kamusinga, Moi Girls High School and Bungoma Highschool. Kibabii University is also located in the County