Lodwar, September 11th ( Governor’s Press Service)— Turkana leaders have agreed with the Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) that social infrastructure projects from the World Bank-funded Lokichar-Nakodok road project will be distributed to benefit all sub-counties.
Governor Josphat Nanok reiterated his stand that the road being a trunk highway was a national project, the entire Turkana was a catchment area and CSR projects had to be spread across the county. He explained that products to be transported through the road came from across Turkana and will therefore benefit even regions far away from the highway.
He agreed that the road will open up the county to more trade and investment opportunities and maintained that the CSR projects will be spent to develop supporting infrastructure to ensure the region benefits to these opportunities.
The Governor said the consultation with the leadership forum and County Government officials was to agree on projects picked in every sub-county as well as familiarise leaders with the MoU signed between the County and KeNHA last July.
Through the MOU, the County Government committed to waive levies and fees charged on construction material for infrastructure projects while KeNHA committed to among others invest Sh2.8 billion in infrastructure projects as part of community social responsibility (CSR).
Governor Nanok added that the County Government role in implementation of the MOU was to strengthen collaboration in projects implemented by KeNHA through monitoring and ultimately, in handing over of projects on completion.
He said the County Government had waived billions of shillings in royalties and taxes and was invested to ensure successful implementation.
KeNHA Deputy Director for Development Eng. John Ndinika told the leader that the Authority was guided by the community on choice of projects. He said that key objectives of the road project was to facilitate transport and cross-border trade as well as improve accessibility of Turkana County. He revealed that another aspect of the project was the laying of fibre optic cable from Eldoret to Nakodok.
Deputy Governor Peter Lotethiro encouraged KeNHA to maintain a uniform standard of tarmac in the entire road from Kainuk to Nakodok, and ensure the project is completed with less than 15 months left in the implementation period.
The legislatures led by Turkana North MP and Chairman MPs’ caucus, Christopher Nakuleu urged KeNHA to speed up the roll out of the projects.
The leaders have agreed that the funds will be invested in high impact projects within the critical sectors of health, education, water as well as to boost trade and support food security.
The leaders appreciated KeNHA for the consultation with both the leaders and local communities.
Other leaders who participated in the discussions include MPs John Lodepe (Turkana Central), James Lomenen (Turkana South), Ali Lokiru (Turkana East), Jeremiah Lomurkai (Loima) and Epuyo Nanok (Turkana West); Speaker of the County Assembly Ekitela Lokaale and Leader of Majority in the Assembly Bethwel Kobong’in.
Senior County Government officials present included Deputy County Secretary Robert Loyelei, County Executives Emathe Namuar (Finance and Economic Planning), Chris Aletia (Water, Environment and Mineral Resources), Jennifer Nawoi (Lands); Chief Officers Rosemary Nchinyei (Roads), Moses Natome (Water), Pauline Lokuruka (Education, Sports and Social Protection).
Others were Chief of Staff Ekuwom Nakiporo, Advisors Protus Akuja (Extractives) and Rebecca Lowoiya (Politics and Intergovernmental Relations) among others.
Delegation from KeNHA also included Assistant Director Eng. Julius Mak’Odero.