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Leaders reach deal to allow trucking of oil from Turkana

Saturday July 7 2018

Turkana oil

Petroleum and Mining Cabinet Secretary John Munyes (left) during a meeting with elected leaders from Turkana County in which an agreement was reached to allow the transportation of oil from the region to Mombasa. PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

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Leaders from Turkana have agreed to allow crude oil to leave the county after a meeting with top regional security officers.

The meeting was also attended by Petroleum and Mining Cabinet Secretary John Munyes.

It was called a week after residents blocked the trucking of more oil to Mombasa in protest over rising insecurity and lack of jobs.

In the meeting held in Lokori, Turkana East and convened on Thursday by Rift Val-ley Regional Coordinator Mongo Chimwanga and Mr Munyes, Turkana Governor Josephat Nanok and other elected leaders said Tullow Oil is free to carry on with transportation of oil.


Angry residents supported by MPs Mohammed Ali Lokiru (Turkana East) and James Lomenen (Turkana South) had on Wednesday last week blocked five trucks destined for Mombasa at Kalemngorok along the Lokichar-Kapenguria highway.


They demanded that the government beefs up security along the Turkana-Baringo border, recover stolen livestock and assure them of their share of jobs and tenders in the oil operations.


Addressing journalists after the meeting, Mr Chimwanga said that the concerns raised by leaders would be addressed immediately.

"Of importance is the review of deployment of both specialised security personnel and National Police Reservists within the county and the leaders gave specific areas that they want policed. That will be done immediately by the county police commanders in Turkana and Baringo," Mr Chimwanga said.

He added they are eager to ensure smooth oil operations in the region, noting that proper structures are needed to ensure residents raise their concerns without fear.


"We want to put structures in place so that if there are any concerns from the community then everybody knows what platform they can present them for deliberations and agreements," he added.

During the deliberations that were also attended by Mr Nanok’s deputy Peter Lotethiro, Turkana County Commissioner Seif Matata, former Turkana East MP Nicholas Ngikor, MCAs and senior county government officials, Mr Chimwanga assured the leaders that the government will do everything possible to recover stolen livestock.

"The deployment of General Service Unit and Rapid Deployment Unit officers will be done in three days,” he said.


The often volatile Kapedo has been the most affected area by banditry attacks and Mr Chimwanga said a special deputy county commissioner will be posted there in two weeks in addition to more police reservists.

Mr Munyes, who hails from Turkana, said that concerns on jobs, tenders and support for host communities would be looked into.

"On Friday next week we will have a conference to discuss local content and we will identify professionals and leaders in the county for engagement with my ministry and Tullow Oil on how to deal with the grievances," Mr Munyes said.