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County officials visit Ethiopia for peace talk

Turkana Peace Building and Conflict Management Director Geoffrey Apedor on Thursday led a team of County officials and peace stakeholders on a visit to the Chief Administrator of Dassenach Woreda in Ethiopia and held discussions on Peace building efforts in the cross border areas.

Director Apedor explained that the visit had been recommended during an intergovernmental meeting held in Lodwar last week where the Dassenach Woreda authorities were represented.

Apedor said Governor Jeremaih Lomorukai had created an enabling directorate of Peace to pursue innovative solutions to the persistent conflict between Turkana of Kenya and the Dassenach and Nyangatom of Ethiopia.

The Director said the efforts had been fruitful since the border area which had been impassable due to community instigated conflicts was now open and residents can move freely.

The chief administrator of Dassenach Woreda Mr Aymela Fikremariyam described the visit as the starting point of a long journey towards establishing local structures for discussing peace in the neighbouring Kenyan and Ethiopian settlements at Kokuro, Merukuka, Todonnyang and Olegech.

Fikremariyam promised to orientate the Kenyan delegation on the Ethiopian structure of Administration so as to create a harmonised reporting line when tackling conflict triggers.

The meeting resolved to draw a calendar of events whereby a joint team of Kenyan and Ethiopian authorities would sensitise the local communities on significance of peaceful coexistence at Merukuka on Friday and the processes of reporting peace spoilers to the authorities for action.

The visit which was sponsored by TUPADO was also used as a platform for the introduction of the areas’ peace building officer and sharing of contacts for information exchange.

Andrew Ekara’ (TUPADO -Project officer),Denisew Tekane (Head of Dassenech Woreda Prosperity Party),Gnemer Gnakow(Head of assist, Chief of Government and Political Affairs),Umar Nakuwe (Head of assist, Chief of prosperity party),Lokol Loya(Head of Peace and Security),Abdi Adan (Peace-building Officer-greater  North)  were in attendance.

By Peter Gitonga

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