• April 19, 2024
  • Last Update April 19, 2024 7:23 AM
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Heavy mining investment to change the perception about West Pokot County

Heavy mining investment to change the perception about West Pokot County

Kapenguria

Thursday April 4, 2024

KNA by Richard Muhambe/Anthony Melly

West Pokot County has been hitting the limelight for various bad reasons but with the upcoming development of various partners, the county’s name tag “The County of Hidden Treasures” is soon coming to fruition.

With the official commissioning of the Clinker Production Company scheduled for next week at Sebit limestone mines in Kipkomo Sub County along the Kapenguria-Lodwar Highway, the county is set to experience a paradigm shift with residents adapting to new forms of livelihoods.

Clinker is a nodular material produced in the kilning process during cement production and is used as the binder in many cement products.

Besides limestone, there are gold deposits in various parts of the county although residents have been using crude mining methods to extract the minerals.

During a site visit to ensure matters of mining compliance are met before the Head of State’s visit and commissioning of the company next week, Mining Principal Secretary (PS) Elijah Mwangi said the Sh45 billion worth mining investment by a private investor is a big boost in opening up job opportunities across the country with all cement production companies in the country being assured of the availability of raw material locally.

“With this kind of investment, once the company goes into full capacity, the clinker demands by the cement factories in the country will have been met and the excess available for export. Currently the production is enough feed for all cement factories in the country,” said PS Mwangi.

He assured of the government’s unconditional support encouraging those willing to invest in the mining sector to engage the latest technology to explore the abundant untapped mineral resources in various parts of the country.

The PS revealed that the company currently has a capacity of employing 2,500 people most of whom are from the local community hence a boost to various sectors of the economy.

“The community is going to enjoy immense benefits from this factory as it is already being witnessed since the construction works started. We have seen several residential houses coming up and soon this area will become an industrial centre,” stated the Mining PS highlighting that the increased transport activities in the area has also been witnessed.

He disclosed that the royalty from the company that will be paid to the National Government, 20 percent of it will be channeled back to the host county government with another 10 percent of the total production to the community and 1 percent of the revenue collected going to the immediate residents.

PS Mwangi added that the residents will also enjoy educational, health and business support courtesy of the company’s Community Social Responsibility (CSR) programmes calling on the community members to constitute a Community Development management Committee for realisation of the activities.

The PS lauded the DEVKI Group of Companies for choosing West Pokot County as one of its mining investment destinations noting that the move will supplement the government’s agenda of equitable distribution of development activities even to the so called marginalised areas.

“We must as a government appreciate the investor since so far it has employed 11,000 people across its companies within the country,” posed Mwangi.

The Companies’ Group Chair Dr Narendra Raval said they had chosen rural areas for their investment plans so as to create job opportunities for the communities and help change negative perceptions underlying such destinations.

“We have had such investments in areas such as Kajiado, Samburu and now Sebit in West Pokot. The perception about West Pokot has been wrong from what we have experienced since we started this investment here,” observed Dr Raval popularly known as Guru.

He described the Pokot community as very hospitable and nice people to interact with and work together reiterating that he together with his team have been spending most of the time in the county without being troubled.

The Board Chair has appealed to the community members to come together and own the company since they stand to benefit from it on matters of employment, education, health among other essential services.

He vowed that the Group’s dream is to change lives of the locals through various forms of empowerment as per the community’s needs, promising to pay visits often.

Courtesy; KNA

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