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Raila says government only interested in oil in Turkana

Cord leader Raila Odinga on Saturday accused the Jubilee administration of failing to tap water from the discovered aquifer in Turkana.

Mr Odinga said President Kenyatta’s government was only interested in oil in the region.

He said thousands of Turkana residents were facing acute shortage of water yet they were sitting on a great source of the commodity. He said if the water was tapped, the drought and famine known to the region would be a thing of the past.

Speaking on his second day of a three-day visit to the county, the opposition leader said if they formed the next government they will make sure the water is tapped as soon as possible.

Mr Odinga, who was accompanied by Turakana Governor Josephat Nanok, claimed that Jubilee had only started to pay attention to the county because of the recently-discovered oil.

“The Jubilee administration is currently making inroads in the county for oil benefits as they hoodwink you by launching projects worth billions yet they do not have a budget for such projects,” he said in Kakuma where he addressed an enthusiastic crowd.

Three weeks ago, Deputy President William Ruto was in the county to launch roads project worth over Sh50 billion where he took a swipe at Mr Nanok for failing to invest well the billions of shillings allocated the county every year.

DEFLECTING BLAME

But Mr Odinga was quick to defend the governor, instead deflecting the blame on the ruling administration.

“Whenever they launch a road project, tractors are pulled out of the roads immediately the President or his deputy leave. Anyone can call them to launch even a toilet project at your home,” he told the residents.

The second day of his visit went smoothly after Friday’s disrupted meeting in Katilia in Turkana East where rowdy youths stopped his meeting.

Mr Odinga started the day in Kokuro, then Kakuma and later flew to Lokichoggio where he urged potential voters to register in large numbers so as to vote out the Jubilee government in the August elections.

At Kokuro, in Turkana North, he criticised the government for failing to tackle banditry in the pastoral region following frequent attacks by militiamen from Ethiopia and South Sudan.

“Kokuro is a banditry prone area and every time neighbors from Ethiopia launch attacks to kill people and steal livestock. It is the responsibility of the national government to protect the lives of people and property. But this government has not done so. This is one of the reasons they should go home,” he said.

ETHIOPIAN MILITIAMEN

The ODM party leader said that it was sad that the Ethiopia militiamen were launching attacks inside the country and asked the government to secure the country’s boundaries.

On the worsening drought situation in the country, Mr Odinga said that the national government must use the already established structures in the counties instead of the provincial administration to supply relief food.

He urged residents to support National Super Alliance, which he said he was sure to clinch the presidential ticket.

Mr Nanok said that Turkana was an ODM zone and that they would support Mr Odinga’s presidential bid.

Mr Nanok said his county government was already responding to the biting drought by setting aside Sh1 billion to mitigate its effects.

“We suspended projects like construction of roads and schools that had been planned so that we have funds for more food and pasture for livestock,” the county boss said.

He warned against using the relief food to make money, saying action will be taken against those found.

He challenged Jubilee leaders in the county to push for a bigger share of funds to the counties so as to help them ravaging drought.

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