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January 16, 2019

Farmers won’t allow dam construction to start until they’re paid

Power plant Kariba dam/FILE
Power plant Kariba dam/FILE

Farmers in Gatundu North have demanded compensation before the groundbreaking of a dam later this month.

President Uhuru Kenyatta is to preside over the groundbreaking ceremony of the Sh24 billion Karimenu 2 Dam on June 22.

However, farmers whose land has been taken over for the project have said they will not move out until they are paid.

They were speaking at a meeting convened by Athi Water Services at Kiriko Coffee Factory on Monday.

“There is no need of commissioning a project only for us to complain about it later,we have been patient but things are not okay because none of us has received a single cent despite submitting our documents,” Mathew Mwangi said.

He is the residents' spokesman. Mary Wanjiru, 90, said they should be given land so their husbands do not misuse the compensation money.

“Our men are waiting to receive the money to go and drink,” she said.

National Land Commission officials who wanted to serve the residents with a Gazette notice indicating that the government is ready to take their land were met with resistance.

The residents said they fear once the contractor begins construction, many of them will not be paid.

The dam is expected to increase water supply in Nairobi and Eastern and irrigate parts of the lower parts of the constituency.


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