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February 23, 2019

Nyeri to heed Nema’s advice after row over new dumpsite

Machinery at work at the dumpsite yesterday
Machinery at work at the dumpsite yesterday

Nyeri has dismissed claims of a row between the county and the National Environment Management Authority over management of a dumpsite.

The two were said to be wrangling over the relocation of garbage from 9.6-acre Asian Quarters dumpsite in Nyeri town.

A section of residents and Nema officials have opposed the move, warning of the effects the waste will have on the nearby Gathwariga stream and the environment.

Nema’s county director Stephen Njoka had ordered the government to halt the relocation.

The county plans to convert the area into a bus park.

Nyeri Transport and Infrastructure executive Muthui Kariuki said they are following Nema’s guidelines on managing the dumpsite.

“A 400-metre trench that will be 15 feet wide and 40 feet deep will be dug at the edge of the dumpsite and lined with a dam liner to mitigate any possible pollution of Gathwariga seasonal stream,” he said.

The stream is a stone’s throwaway from the site and the dam fillers will prevent possibility of seepage, he said.

Muthui said they are managing the situation before the eventual re-location of the dumpsite, which involves environmental assessments and other processes.

“Nema should have had the same verve to question the dumpsite’s existence when residents were really suffering before the clearance, bearing in mind that Asian Quarters has been an illegal dumpsite for all these years,” said the CEC.

Wamuyu Gathinji, an Environmental Impact Assessment expert who accompanied Muthui, explained the scientific process that will be used in waste management.

She said the long-term solution is using land fillers, which the county government is in the process of finalising.

The clearing of the dumpsite has so far cost the government Sh3.6 million.

The county government has been hiring the equipment from the Ministry of Transport.

The government intends to converted the dumpsite into a bus park to decongest Nyeri town.

A police post and modern business stalls will also be set up. The area will also have a leisure park.

The clearance process is expected to end in August.

The government has insisted that the area was initially not meant for a dumpsite.

“Garbage was not supposed to have been dumped at Asian Quarters and the County Government of Nyeri is cognisant of that fact,” said Muthui.

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