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North Rift County leaders discuss NOREB Bill

County Assembly Speakers from eight North Rift Counties, have vowed to fast-track the process to ratify a Bill, which will give the North Rift Economic Bloc (NOREB), legal framework.

Speaking during the closing ceremony of a two-day forum of County Speakers and Attorneys at a Kabarnet resort, Friday, Baringo County Assembly Speaker, Vincent Kemboi, said they expect the Bill to be tabled on the floors of the eight member assemblies of Turkana, West Pokot, Samburu, Trans Nzoia, Elgeyo Marakwet, Nandi and Baringo, to be deliberated before passage.

Kemboi flanked by other Assembly Speakers; Major (Rtd) Fredrick Lengees (Samburu), Philemon Melly (Nandi) and Philip Muigei (Uasin Gishu), said that the 2019 Bill was crucial since it seeks to harmonise social economic policies and development plan of member counties.

“The Bill will ensure that we bring all our energies to some of the common agendas such as promoting peace and security within the region and creation of employment opportunities for residents,” he explained.

The Baringo Speaker noted that the region, apart from taking advantage of the economies of scale, will also benefit from the strengths of other developed member counties.

Major (Rtd) Lengees said that they are optimistic that the Bill will be passed into law in all the eight counties, so that it can give a clear roadmap in the development agendas of the region.

The Samburu Speaker stated that the Bill will enable the bloc to source resources from both levels of governments, non-governmental organisations and international agencies and channel them towards key developments benefiting the entire region.

Muigei said that once the bloc becomes a legal entity, it will solidify the region by uniting leaders and their governments in order to address key challenges including perennial insecurity, which has negatively hampered development from taking place in some areas in the North Rift region.

“We will be able to talk from the same point of knowledge and information and analyse keenly on security matters before giving a clear way forward,” the Uasin Gishu Speaker said.

He encouraged other counties within the region to join the bloc so that they can build a formidable partnership that supports the aspirations of residents.

Melly who was also accompanied by NOREB CEO, Dr Godfrey Chesang, gave assurance that residents from member counties will be involved so that they can give their varied concerns and ideas about the Bill before it is presented to Members of County Assemblies when they come back in February after recess.

By Benson Kelio and Joshua Kibet

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