Leaders from West Pokot and Elgeyo Marakwet counties welcomed the new year with a high profile peace meeting that was meant to address perennial security lapses along the border of the two counties
Elgeyo Marakwet governor Alex Tolgos and his counterpart from West Pokot county John Lonyangapuo have been making several tours to the volatile areas culminating in a joint peace and prayer rally that brought together Pokot and Marakwet residents at Kapsait.
An annual prayer event which was initiated by the late catholic Bishop Cornellius Korir saw bishop Maurice Crowley taking the mantle and conducting a mass which was attended by leaders and residents from West Pokot and Elgeyo Marakwet counties.
Bishop Crowley asked the two communities to embrace peace citing that if they abandon cattle rustling development will be realized in the area. “Am not a Pokot or a Marakwet but am both a Marakwet and a Pokot. May peace love and unity dwell in you throughout the year,” he said
During the mass West Pokot county governor Lonyangapuo said the government does not have affirmative serious plan to end cattle rustling along the pastoralist communities hence proposed to the government to deploy security officers who understand the native language of the people.
He said if the government chooses to go by his proposal it will help eradicate cattle rustling in the region citing that 55 years down the line there is still animosity among the pastoralist communities.
Elgeyo Marakwet governor asked bandits to return stolen livestock for the sake of peace urging that the bandits wrecking havoc in the North Rift counties are known and the police should arrest and prosecute the suspects.
Silale ward member of county assembly Nelson Lotela said the insecurity problem along at the border of Tiaty constituency and Turkana East sub county need to be urgently resolved.
The meeting saw a couple of leaders from both West Pokot and Elgeyo Marakwet attending as they agreed to conduct a series of peace meetings throughout the year.