By Brighton Makori.
Kisii Kenya 10 June 2012………...Fredrick Ochieng 28-year-old youth from Marsabit County is cycling across twenty five counties across the country to preach against Covid 19, drug abuse and early pregnancies to save Kenyans.
Speaking to Gusii star at Kisii town on Wednesday Ochiengi said he was motivated to sensitize Kenyans on the dangers of the disease, drug abuse and used chiefs public baraza’s to achieve his mission.
Equipped with a Petri-powered radio, he uses it to sensitize members of the public about the pandemic and has defied odds to ensure that his message sinks to Kenyans in towns he passes.
He told the Gusii star that he is using the radio to send messages to avoid gatherings banned by the government to curb the spread of the disease. and his bike has written messages for others to read.
Ochieng about his survival he said he depends from well wishers who give him water along the way and fruits,adding he pays courtesy to County Commissioners and informs them on his mission who have real assisted him .
Trained Carpenter and painter gets moral support from his wife, Beatrice Adhiambo and father, Charles Otieno, a former forest officer in Marsabit County, stressing it gives him strength and motivation to accomplish his mission.
“ I talk to my wife and children to give them confidence that I am safe. My wife and two children are patient and pray for me” Ochieng said, adding he started his journey from Tana river County and has covered more than 3000 kilometers.
The cyclist uses Global Positioning System ( GBS) and a map to get direction and asks boda boda operators and pedestrians whenever he feels he is lost, adding it is helping him to save time and reach his destinations on time.
He sleeps in urban Centres save for Machakos County where he slept at a bus station for his security since he arrived at night and had to comply with the government’s 10.00 pm curfew deadline.
In August last year, he covered 14 counties and he is optimistic, he will cover 25 this year, adding, by June 9, he had covered- Tana River, Kilifi, Mombasa, Kwale, Taita Taveta, Makueni, Kitui, Machakos, Narok, Kajiado, Bomet , Nyamira, Kisii and was headed to Migori, homabay and Western region counties.
Born in Siaya County, Ochieng learnt cycling in 2002 when he was in standard 8 at St. John Primary, Marsabit County and completed his O-level at Sacred Heart in Isiolo County in 2007.
Before Covid he broke out, he used to sensitize school children to shun abusing drugs and early pregnancies which could ruin their education and lives.
He encountered wild animals in some counties, contacted area county Commissioner, who liaised with Kenya Wildlife officers to assist him continue with his journey.
Ochieng says he escaped death narrowly in Bomet County after a Matatu swerved to avoid hitting him and hit an electric post, adding nobody was injured.
The cyclist, who uses a black mamba in his mission, appeals to the government to support youths with dreams to realize them, stressing that if supported, they can use their energy, skills, talents, passion and knowledge to transform the lives of Kenyans.
He bought his black mamba bike in 2014 and has been using it since then to reach out to Kenyans to campaign against Covid 19, adding it is easier to repair and its spare parts are available unlike mountain bikes, which are expensive and their spare parts are not easily available.
He exuded confidence that he will succeed in passing the message amid alarming coronavirus statistics in his home turf.