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Samburu to host international camel derby

29 August 2013, 12:50 Kelvin Wanjohi

Samburu - The Kenya Tourism Board in conjunction with the Samburu County government will host the annual camel race, known as the Mararal International Derby starting on August 30 and ending on September 1.

Presenting the Samburu County government with a cheque worth KES 700 000 on Wednesday at the KTB headquarters in Nairobi, the board's Managing director Muriithi Ndegwa said the camel derby will bring together over 20 countries all over the world who will come to witness the annual and unique race in the region.

He said that this will be a great opportunity for the country to showcase its wealth in culture, heritage, and traditions as it will bring on board several ethnic communities including the Samburu and the Turkana communities who are known for their strong beliefs in their culture.

This is not the first event in the country and we have been facilitating this great occasion for four consecutive years in a bid to promote tourism in the Northern region which is heavily endowed with tourist attractions,” said Mureithi.

He said that the event has started reaching global audience with visitors coming from overseas countries including USA, Netherlands, Brazil, Canada among others, with the aim of opening up the Northern Tourism sector.

He urged Kenyans to embrace local tourism by visiting such areas, because most of them only visit familiar tourist sites like the Maasai Mara, forgetting other areas like the Suguta Valley which is a landscape to behold, let alone famous site like the Kenyatta House, where Kenya's founding father was held in detention.

Samburu deputy governor, Joseph Lepurkat said that another important aim of the derby was to promote peace and cohesion among the residents who are normally involved in cattle rustling.

The county government is working tirelessly to ensure lasting peace and tranquility is sustained within the county and outside the borders,” said Lepurkat.

He assured the visitors who are expected to arrive of security along the Rumuruti-Mararal road which has one of the high insecurity cases in the region.

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