Kenyan leaders last week converged in West-Pokot to celebrate one year since a peace deal signed between Kenya and Uganda.
According to locals, the peace initiative signed last year in Moroto has brought joy and reprieve among many families living along the border of the two East African neighbours putting an end to the perennial animosity as they share the gains achieved from signing the MOU.
Leaders drawn from the Kenyan side converged at the Nasal area in Kacheliba constituency West Pokot County to celebrate the gains of peaceful co-existence 12 months down the line.
Residents say they have started reaping the fruits of relative calm, with the commissioning of the Nasal water project one of the peace pact project to provide water to over 3000 families leaving along the border.
Speaking during the launch of the project Kacheliba MP Mark Lomunokol says its with great joy that the residents who have witnessed battles can now settle down and taste clean drinking water courtesy of the peace agreement that has seen new developments in the region opening up the region for trade and investment.
Accompanied by UNDP representative Asfaw Kumssa, he noted that the cross border pact was a necessity that has brought peace and co-existence between the communities that must be supported to improve livelihoods among the pastoralist communities.
West Pokot Governor John Lonyangapuo lauded the peace effort that has now brought calm in the region settling the community conflicts as they embrace peaceful co-existence through trade.
He added that the peace dividends will change the narrative from conflicts to prosperous regions that will attract investment opportunities.
Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa who was the Chief Guest says the project is among the five initiatives that were in the MOU to foster peace among the border communities, the peace projects are Key in fostering unity and co-existence.
"The MoU aimed to economically empower local communities living along the Kenya-Uganda border, and boost peace development. The collaboration between the two countries will ensure communities living on both sides of the border are accorded opportunities for better co-operation, close collaboration," said Wamalwa.
"The Karamoja cluster is a cross-border area shared by the four neighbouring countries and can be considered as a single social-ecological zone whose development is best perceived within the framework of an integrated development plan jointly executed."
The CS says the MOU is aimed at increasing the inter-ethnic interactions, collaborations, and movements, leading to a reduction in tensions and resource-based conflicts, elimination of illegal flow of small arms and light weapons, empowerment of local and county government operations, as well as strengthening of peacebuilding, community resilience, and conflict prevention.