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January 18, 2019

NLC ordered to pay Sh3.4m to petitioners in Ndakaini Dam case

Ndakaini Dam in Gatanga  the dam which supplies 80 percent of water consumed in Nairobi.Photo file
Ndakaini Dam in Gatanga the dam which supplies 80 percent of water consumed in Nairobi.Photo file

The High Court has ordered the National Lands Commission to pay six petitioners Sh3.4 million. Their land was acquired for the construction of Ndakaini Dam in 1989 by the then commissioner of lands.

Justice George Odunga ordered NLC to pay the money by itself or through the Nairobi City Water and Sewerage Company and Nairobi county to the petitioners as ordered by the High Court decree of March 16, 2010.

The amount should be paid together with interest at court rates. “If the court order provides for the payment of any money by way of damages or otherwise, the respective Accounting Officer for the government department concerned shall pay to the person entitled,” the judge said.

Samuel Mweru, Mwangi Mweru, James Karanja, Peter Kariuki, Daniel Nganga and Simon Thuku said in 1989 the Commissioner of Lands acquired the plot to build the dam.

Ndakaini provides water to Nairobi county and its environs through the NCWSC. The six appealled the compensation scheme which was determined and a decree issued on March 16, 2010.

The Lands commissioner was ordered to pay the Sh3,448,234.16.

However, the Lands commissioner never paid the compensation by August when the Constitution was promulgated and the office ceased to exist and its functions taken over by the NLC. The Lands commission indicated the Nairobi county government is responsible for paying the amount. The applicants said despite the demands and follow-ups, the respondents refused to settle the payment.

The judge said the applicants are entitled to interest since there is no satisfactory material on the delayed payment.

residents get ndakaini water

Meanwhile, the national government will soon start distributing water from Ndakaini Dam to residents of Gatanga, Murang’a county.

Area MP Joseph Nduati said the Athi Water Services Board has already sent surveyors to the ground. “We have been supplying the city of Nairobi with water for decades now yet residents still fetch water from rivers,” he said.

The agreement was reached after the MP put up a spirited fight to have residents supplied with Ndakaini’s water. The dam was built in 1989 and sits on 1,200 acres.

Nduati has been pushing the government to distribute 10 per cent of the water in the constituency as a form of compensation.

Last month, he asked the board to honour President Uhuru Kenyatta’s directive to distribute water that will be harnessed though the Northern Collector tunnel to Gatanga before it is channeled to Nairobi.

Nduati said residents will oppose the Sh6.8 billion tunnel until the water is first distributed locally. The contractor is already laying pipes to tunnel the water to Nairobi.

He spoke at Kihumbuini market during a tree planting drive.

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