25 June 2018

Kenya: Odinga Reassures Turkana Residents on Oil Benefits

ODM leader Raila Odinga has assured Turkana residents that they will not be left behind in the Building Bridges initiative that is aimed at ensuring peace and stability in the country.

Mr Odinga said his handshake with President Uhuru Kenyatta was meant to unite Kenyans by putting away political differences and stopping ethnic divisions and discrimination. He was speaking on Saturday at Nakorimunyen village in Loima sub-county, where he joined mourners at the burial of Mr David Lochuch, former ODM Turkana secretary-general.

Turkana leaders led by Governor Josphat Nanok eulogised Mr Lochuch as a philanthropist and a leader whose deeds touched the lives of many.

Mr Odinga said under the handshake, leaders from across the political divide will ensure that the discovery of oil and the planned export is a blessing to the residents of Turkana, who have been marginalised for long under the previous regimes.

"We don't want to go the Nigeria way, where poor management of the extractive industry, especially the revenue, was a curse as it led to war, making the residents poorer." Mr Raila said.

He urged leaders in the county who negotiated an oil sharing formula that will see the national, county and local community share revenue at a 75:20:5 basis to ensure international best practices in the extractive industry are adhered to. This comes at a time residents have demanded direct cash transfer of oil resources.

Mr Nanok asked his party leader to ensure that the county benefits from infrastructural development, especially the road that links Kenya and Uganda through Lodwar and Moroto as well as the one that connects Kenya and Ethiopia.

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