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Opening of Kenya-Somalia border to end contraband smuggling

North Eastern Regional Commissioner John Otieno has assured the citizens that the government’s plan to reopen Kenya-Somalia border points will help a great deal in countering the smuggling of contraband goods into the country.

Speaking after meeting Garissa County peace elders, the Regional Commissioner said that opening the borders would trigger the rise of businesses, which would improve the livelihood of the people by broadening their sources of wealth and money.

“We believe that with the opening of the borders, people will do genuine businesses, which will help us tackle insecurity issues arising from contraband goods,” Otieno said.

“I am urging our business people who are patriotic Kenyans to wait for the reopening of the borders so that as they do genuine businesses, the government can also benefit from the revenue collected, which will come back to the people in the form of development projects,” he added.

Mzee Dubat Amey said that the opening of the borders would bring wealth and stability to the nearby counties from exports and imports from both countries.

“With established customs offices at the borders, people will no longer need to use panya routes when bringing in goods because they have already met the required regulations. We will support the government as the elders because we are the government’s foot soldiers,” Amey said.

Otieno also had discussions with the peace elders on ways of ending inter-clan conflicts that have been experienced in times of drought, tackling land disputes, and combating drug abuse.

“Peace elders are a key pillar in ensuring peace and stability in our villages. They will take action and report to authorities anything that they put at risk the security of this area,” Otieno said.

“The elders have assured us that they will work closely with the government in safeguarding the northeastern region,” he added.

By Erick Kyalo

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