Deputy Governor Peter Lotethiro said Turkana County Government is in the forefront in the promotion and preservation of culture when the Swedish School of Arts delegation paid him a courtesy call at the County Headquarters.

“We want our young people to understand where they came from and to know their culture or they will be lost,” he said.

He further added that those who discard their culture become slaves to other cultures. Thus, he welcomed the delegation to explore and learn about the Turkana culture as they look for areas of collaboration on this important aspect of socio-economic development.

“We will be looking on areas like capacity building, technical support and marketing,” said CEC of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources – Charles Lokioto, “as well as resource mobilisation opportunities.”

The Swedish institution is working to partnership with county on cultural promotion and preservation of both the host community and refugees in Kakuma and Kalobeyei.

The Chief Officer of Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources – Rosemary Nchinyei, said there was need to have fully fledged cultural facilities where the youth can rehearse, record and train on matters to do with culture and arts. She said the county through such partnership is looking at institutionalizing the Ekalees Centre to become self sustaining and that which brings all art and culture activities under one roof for both showcasing and preservation.

The Swedish Delegation, accompanied by the Chief Officer, also had sessions with the youth in Kakuma refugee camp engaged in arts and culture. The youth shared their experiences, challenges and opportunities.

“We would like to support the county government in the development of culture through preservation and encouraging the youth explore new ways of cultural development,” said Måns Fellesson.

He led the two representatives from the schools; Camila Freedman and Åsa Lundmark.

On citing the annual Tobong’u Lore cultural festival, the County Secretary –  Peter Eripete said the county government used culture to promote peace and regional development with neighbouring countries – as they share similar traditions and customs.

The deputy governor echoed the same and added that the event had minimised resource-base conflicts.

The Department of Culture organised cultural performances to showcase the rich Turkana cultural heritage.

Also present were Hon. Daniel Emekwi – Chair of the County Assembly Committee of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources and MCA Katilia Ward, Hon. Alice Nakawa – Nominated MCA and Vice-chair of the above committee, Hon. Bethwel Kobongin – Leader of Majority and MCA Songot, Hon. Joseph Epuu – MCA Letea.