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SH4.2 BILLION REQUIRED

Eldoret bypass faces delay after Treasury allocates only Sh756m for compensation

Landowners want MPs to lobby Parliament to increase the allocation so they get full payout by end of June

In Summary

• Uasin Gishu residents set to relocate to pave way for the construction of Eldoret Southern Bypass may be forced to wait a little longer for compensation due to inadequate funds.

• The construction the Sh6 billion, 32km project may also take longer than expected after only Sh756 million of the expected Sh4.2 billion was allocated for compensation in the 2019-20 proposed budget.

An artistic impression of the Eldoret Southern Bypass
COMPENSATION WOES: An artistic impression of the Eldoret Southern Bypass
Image: FILE

Uasin Gishu residents set to relocate to pave way for the construction of Eldoret Southern Bypass may be forced to wait a little longer for compensation due to inadequate funds.

The construction the Sh6 billion, 32km project may also take longer than expected after only Sh756 million of the expected Sh4.2 billion was allocated for compensation in the 2019-20 proposed budget.

Some 1,025 residents are due for compensation to pave way for the road that traverses Kapseret, Kesses and Turbo constituencies.

The residents have asked their leaders to push Parliament to increase the allocation, saying the proposed amount was "a drop in the ocean."

Construction of the project was launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta in August 2017 and was expected to be completed by August next year. The road is expected to ease serious traffic snarl-ups that have been witnessed in Eldoret town's central business district that connects North Rift to the neighbouring countries such as Uganda, South Sudan and Rwanda.

But Kikpkorir Menjo said it will take the government more years to complete compensating residents to relocate.

“If the government continues to budget such small amounts, some of the landowners may die before receiving any compensation,” Menjo said at Kapseret on Thursday. He spoke during a consultative meeting between residents, National Land Commission officials and other government officers.

Last week, the landowners threatened to move to court to stop construction unless the government promises to compensate them by the end of next month.

The government allayed fears of compensation delays but said it will be done in phases.

National Lands Commission acting director for valuation and taxation David Mburu promised that 113 landowners will receive Sh376 million within three weeks.

The amount is the balance of the cash meant for compensation in the first tranche of Sh530 million that was released by Treasury to the Kenya National Highways Authority.

Mburu said only landowners who have presented all required documents will receive payment. “As NLC, we shall follow due process to ensure we pay only genuine landowners,” Mburu said.

edited by peter Obuya