Senators disagree over site of oil processing plant
Wetang’ula’s stand provoked a strong reaction from Isiolo Senator Mohammed Kuti who said that Isiolo was chosen for sound reasons since it is centrally and strategically located to be a supply point of refined oil products to the rest of the country as well as Ethiopia. “Isiolo is much closer to the oil fields in Turkana and South Sudan. A refinery there would efficiently supply refined products in all directions at minimal cost,” he said. Kakamega Senator Bonny Khalwale said the decision of Isiolo should be reviewed since there was no sufficient consultation on the matter.
I found this excerpt from a Kenya newspaper curious in that, there is no contribution from the senator for Turkana, Mr. Munyes, even though the issue in discussion pertains to Turkana oil. Does Senator Munyes have a reason for being mum on this issue which directly hinges on Turkana issues? The idea of locating a refinery in isiolo is as ridiculous as shutting out members of the Turkana community from decision making about Turkana oil issues. I disagree with Mr. Kuti’s claim of selecting Isiolo “for sound reasons”. What “sound reasons”? It seems to me a refinery located in Turkana would be a lot closer to South Sudan, Ethiopia, and Kenya, than one located in Isiolo. What Mr. Kuti did not say, is that, their real intention for wanting the refinery situated in Isiolo is to deny Turkanas jobs, as usual. It makes “sound” sense to build a spanking new refinery on the shores of Lake Turkana than in Isiolo. This is an idea I shared with Mr. Raila Odinga before elections. One of his intentions, if elected president, was to build a new refinery on the shores of Lake Turkana. I liked this idea and others he proposed.