Press Release: Natural Resource Conference in Lodwar, Turkana County

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 21st, October 2014

PRESS RELEASE: Natural Resource Conference Hosted by Friends of Lake Turkana (Oct 22nd – 23rd)

Friends of Lake Turkana (FoLT) are hosting a conference titled Towards a Governance Agenda: Harnessing Natural Resources, Communities, and Development. The Lodwar event on natural resource management is the first of its kind to be held in the county of Turkana. The two-day conference hosted at FoLT’s new resource center facility brings together local communities, key stakeholders in natural resource management and government policy makers.

Dignitaries attending the conference include: H.E Governor, Josphat Nanok of Turkana County, Hon. Senator John Munyes (Turkana County) Laurence Morrissette (Acting Head of Cooperation, Canadian High Commission), Sandy Stash (Vice President Tullow Oil), Chrispine Omondi Juma (Director, Water Resources State Dept. Ministry of Environment, Water and Natural Resources) and Ikal Ang’elei (Executive Director, FoLT).

The discovery of oil and water in the Turkana region as well as planned infrastructural development projects, have triggered great interest in the area. Tullow Oil has continued its exploration campaign, striking commercially viable quantities of oil in different parts of the Lake Turkana basin. Sustainable and proper management of these natural resources, and involvement of the local communities from the offset is necessary to effect sustainable and equitable development. 

Kenya is the largest economy in East Africa. In 2012, Kenya’s GDP accounted for 33% of the entire East African GDP. This is predicted to be bigger in the coming years, especially following oil discovery in Turkana. If managed prudently, the natural resources in the Lake Turkana Basin hold a promise for economic liberation and development in the region and Kenya at large. However, conflict may hinder progress. Its characteristics include concerns over irregular land transaction, low or non-community participation in natural resource processes, unclear compensation structure for loss of livelihoods and lack of sound policies and legislations, among others factors. 

EDITORS NOTE: Friends of Lake Turkana (FoLT), is a grassroots organization founded in 2009 whose mission is to foster social, economic and environmental justice in the Lake Turkana Basin.

This is through:

•Protect and conserve Lake Turkana, the Lake Turkana Basin and its environment.

•Advocate for the rights of the Turkana Basin communities.

•Increase the participation of communities in environmental protection policy formulation, sustainable management and wise use of natural resources, & lobby for increased participation of communities in the development and governance of their resources

 

Kindly find attached the full program of the conference with more information and a longer version of this press release. Please follow the conversation live via Twitter @FoLTurkana #NatResourceConference 

For More Info/ Interviews Contact:

Sheila Bett      +254738738702 (Communications Officer, FoLT)

Anyiko Owoko +254721368983 (Publicist FoLT Natural Resource Conference)

FoLT Facebook: Friends of Lake Turkana 

Twitter: @FoLTurkana

 

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