Lack of consultation blamed for friction in Turkana County

Written By: O’Brien Kimani

Kenya discovered commercially viable crude oil in Turkana County seven years ago.

The government has been urged to audit and regulate firms exploring for oil in Turkana County to ensure the local community is not cheated out of their right.

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Stakeholders now say the over 220 billion shillings that Tullow Oil is said to have used in drilling oil and gas in Turkana must be audited to ascertain that all that money was actually invested in the project.

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Kenya Civil Society Organisations Coordinator Charles Wanguhu noted that it was only through such checks and balances that those carrying out perceived developments could be held to account.

Speaking Wednesday in Nairobi during a media round table discussion on “Championing Africa’s economic growth through sustainable oil and gas mining”, Wanguhu who is also a social activist observed that the 600 million barrels of oil currently being tapped must be beneficial to all stakeholders especially the community otherwise the exploration of the said oil will not be useful.

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Kenya Land Alliance Chief Executive Officer Odenda Lumumba stated that the government must intensify public participation of the Turkana communities to ensure that they do not sabotage the project.

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Lumumba has urged all players in the sector to convene to address thorny issues like the land compensation, relocation of families along the proposed pipeline among other issues

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