here is a growing need among leaders and residents of Bungoma County to have a second entry border point at Chepkube to boost the Lwakhakha. Backers of this need who include the county government’s top leadership point to rising trade and travel to signal the need for a second entry facility.
Bungoma County government CEC member for Public Management and Administration Mr. Patrick Wandili says the number of people entering and leaving the County has been rising particularly those crossing through the unofficial route.
It is on the strength of this need that the national government dispatched a multi-agency team to Western to carry out a feasibility study on the possibility of opening up additional entry points.
The team, led by the director of Border management secretariat, Kennedy Nyairo started out in Busia on Tuesday and assessed four potential points of entry and exit before proceeding to Bungoma yesterday (Friday) .
They paid a courtesy call on the area county Commissioner Mr. Stephen Kihara and the County Governor’s Office where they were received by Mr Patrick Sabwami representing the governor who is out of the County on official duties.
They assessed Chebkube entry point and later held a public participation baraza. Nyairo said the team’s mandate was to assess and see whether the selected points meet certain criteria by looking at parameters like accessibility, the road network, and security of the areas, volume of work, communication networks and the concurrence of the county governments.
He explained that after this initial visit, the team will draft a recommendation, engage the top leadership in Nairobi including the Principal Secretary, Interior who is the chair of the border management and border control coordination committee for the next plan of action.
The team members included representatives from the border management secretariat, Kenya revenue authority, Kephis, Kenya Maritime Authority, National Police Service, National Intelligence Service, and KNBS.
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Mr Sabwami assured the team that the county government was in support of the venture as it would beef up its revenue base and increase trade volumes.
He said Chepkube has long been known for its booming coffee black market back in the seventies and is therefore an ideal alternative to Lwakhakha, Malaba and Busia borders.
He said that many of the illegal activities taking place around there will be stopped once it is officially turned into an official entry point to the benefit of the county.