Mumias

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Mumias
Municipality
Mumias is located in Kenya
Mumias
Mumias
Location of Mumias
Coordinates: 0°20′N 34°29′E / 0.333°N 34.483°E / 0.333; 34.483Coordinates: 0°20′N 34°29′E / 0.333°N 34.483°E / 0.333; 34.483
Country  Kenya
County Kakamega County
Population (2009)
 • Total 116,358 [1]
Time zone EAT (UTC+3)

Mumias is a town in Kakamega County of Kenya. The town has an urban population of 116,358 (2009 census).[1] Mumias was the center of the Mumias District. The town is linked by road to Kakamega (in east), Busia (west), Bungoma (north), Butere (south). The village of Buchinga is located between Mumias and Kakamega.

Mumias Sugar Company is a major employer. It also owned the Mumias Sugar FC, which was one of the top football teams in Kenya until it was disbanded in 2007.

Five minutes outside Mumias town, on the road to Kakamega, there is a hospital called St. Mary's Hospital. It is run by the Catholic Church.

History[edit]

The town is capital of the Luhya kingdom of Wanga. King Nabongo Mumia, who came to power in 1880, was the last sovereign king of Wanga. He was succeeded by his son Shitawa who ruled after his death in 1949 till the late seventies. He then was succeeded by Mumia II who is currently in power. His role remains largely non executive, but the royal family draws taxes from the trade that goes on in the county council of Mumias, which is to date still regarded as the seat of power. This includes taxes from the Mumias Sugar Company. The family still owns the land in the county although bits and pieces have been sold off to private developers. The entire Royal Family is still very closely linked to the choices of political leaders in the region as well as to their royal ties of the Abashitsetse clan. Each family has its own meetings (families keep the family tree with major families arising from the last sovereign Wanga government, with the brothers of King Mumia forming the Patriarchal Heads of the family). One other very noticeable family is the Kadima family. Mumias has a noticeable Muslim community, unique in western Kenya. It derives from trade links between Wanga state and coastal Kenya.

The town was known as Lureko until it was renamed Mumias.[2]

The Nabongo Cultural Centre in Matungu showcasing the Wanga Kingdom was opened in the outskirts of Mumias in 2008, near the traditional homestead of Wanga kings (Nabongos).[2]

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