Lake Turkana Aerial Photo
Location of Turkana County (red) including the disputed Elemi Triangle (diagonally striped red)
|Formed||4 March 2013|
|• Governor||Joseph Nanok|
|• Total||71,597.8 km2 (27,644.1 sq mi)|
|Elevation||1,138 m (3,734 ft)|
|Time zone||EAT (UTC+3)|
Turkana County is a county in the former Rift Valley Province of Kenya. Turkana is the largest and also the north-western most county in Kenya. It is bordered by the countries of Uganda to the west; South Sudan and Ethiopia, including the disputed Ilemi Triangle, to the north and northeast; and Lake Turkana to the east. To the south and east, neighbouring counties in Kenya are West Pokot, Baringo and Samburu Counties, while Marsabit County is located on the opposite (i.e. eastern) shore of Lake Turkana.
Four sites of Stone Age cultures are situated upon tributaries along the west side of Lake Turkana in West Turkana; at Lokalalei, Kokiselei and Nadung, and became of interest to archaeology beginning sometime during 1988.
The earliest late Stone age industries date to 12,000 b.p.
Direct influence by colonial forces, in the form of pacification within the district began in 1900 and ended in 1918.
During 1926, the entire Turkana people were subjugated to a body of the British military who subsequently restricted their movements to an area of Kenya, forcing these to settle in the area known now as the Turkana County.
During 1958, the district experienced an influx of a number of people classified as belonging to the Turkana people expelled from the Kenyan settlement Isiolo town to be forcibly relocated to the Turkana district by persons of the then British colonial administration.
The district maintained an all but complete isolation from influences of any other countries peoples until the time during 1976 when road-blocks on entering the district were ceased.
The people of the north of the county were reported (2000) endangered by marauding Ethiopians and consequently forced to settle in southerly locations.
Some place names in the country are attributed to the language of the Pokot and Samburu peoples, representing a tradition in the area of inhabitation by these peoples prior to displacement by the Turkana.
The county is within the boundaries of the former Rift Valley province.
According to data provided during 1991 the majority of the population at that time lived by way of farming.
Turkana County is emerging to be a major source of electric power in Kenya. Kengen's Turkwel Hydro Power Plant, situated on the southwest of Turkana County, produces hydroelectric power which is connected to the national power grid at Lessos. The county is current subject of crude oil exploration in Block 10BB and Block 13T and has potential for geothermal, solar and wind energy.
Kekarongole and Katilu had irrigation networks made commencing sometime during or after 1975.
There were thirteen drought periods in a period of 50 years beginning 1938.
Turkana is the poorest region in Kenya.
On 26 March 2012, Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki announced that oil had been discovered in Turkana County after exploratory drilling by Anglo-Irish firm Tullow Oil, and he further stated that
|“||It is... the beginning of a long journey to make our country an oil producer, which typically takes in excess of three years. We shall be giving the nation more information as the oil exploration process continues.||”|
According to Barrett (2001) cited in Watson the wealth of a person is kept in the form of cattle.
Figures stated as of 1998 stated an average estimated herd size of 15-20.
In 2013 it was announced by UNESCO that large reserves of groundwater had been discovered in Turkana County. The water was discovered using satellite exploration technology then confirmed by drilling. The extraction of the water began in 2014 and it is being piped to provide water to Lodwar town for irrigation and water for the people.
|Local authorities (councils)|
|* 1999 census. Source: |
|* 1999 census. Sources: |
The county has three constituencies:
- Turkana North Constituency
- Turkana Central Constituency
- Turkana South Constituency
- Turkana West Constituency
- Turkana East Constituency
- Loima Constituency
The counties have six sub counties
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- Nicholas Kulish (11 September 2013). "Huge Aquifers Are Discovered in North Kenya". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 September 2013.
- Map of the district