DP Ruto witnessing the signing of the Chesegon Peace Accord among the communities of West Pokot, Elgeyo Marakwet and Baringo counties and the reopening of the Chesegon Market, which is a milestone in the quest for lasting peace in the Kerio Valley, Sigor, West Pokot County.
Communities living in Kerio Valley have signed a historical peace deal (Chesegon Peace Accord), effectively bringing an end to perennial deadly conflicts among them.
The ceremony, presided over by Deputy President William Ruto on Wednesday, brought together communities from Elgeyo-Marakwet, West Pokot and Baringo Counties.
Dr Ruto appealed to residents in the three counties to embrace peace, and give the Government a chance to turnaround the region.
He said the newly-found stability would enable the Government to focus on education, healthcare, infrastructure and commerce that had suffered most during the tribal standoffs.
He spoke at Chesegon in West Pokot-Elgeyo Marakwet Counties border during the peace meeting, where he also opened the local market that had been closed for more than seven years due to insecurity.
Dr lauded leaders from the region for spearheading the peace talks, pledging his support and that of the government.
He asked residents in the region to condemn cattle rustling, explaining that those who glorify the criminal act were misleading the community.
Dr Ruto was accompanied by Governors John Lonyang’apuo (West Pokot) and Alex Tolgos (Elgeyo-Marakwet), Senator Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo-Marakwet), MPs Bowen Kangogo (Marakwet East), Peter Lochakapong (Sigor) and Oscar Sudi (Kapseret).
Others were Mark Lomunokol (Kacheliba) William Kisang (Marakwet West), David Pkosing (Pokot South), Samuel Moroto (Kapenguria), Lilian Tomitom (West Pokot) and Jane Chebaibai (Elgeyo-Marakwet).
Leaders who spoke urged communities living in the three counties and their leaders to adhere to the peace pact.
“We pledge to respect the accord. We will always work towards ensuring we are united and work together towards bettering the lives of everyone,” said Mr Lochakapong.
On his part, Mr Kangogo and Mr Pkosing said the region’s development agenda had derailed due to perpetual conflicts.
The two leaders asked communities living in the region to maintain peace to pave way for economic transformation that would better their lives.
Kapseret MP said no politics would be tolerated in the deal, a sentiment that was echoed by Mr Murkomen.
“Our primary focus is to bring everyone together. These reconciliation efforts would make us benefit from each other, and therefore benefit from our synegies,” noted the Elgeyo Marakwet Senator.
Governor Lonyang’apuo and his Elgeyo-Marakwet counterpart Mr Tolgos said the two counties would now focus on the development of the region.
“Moving forward, we will be talking about development; insecurity talks are over now.Let us live in peace so that we can reopen our schools and businesses can thrive,”said Mr Tolgos.