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February 16, 2019

Landowners protest as NLC says payout won’t take long

A section of Eldoret town where the traffic jam will ease traffic congestion
A section of Eldoret town where the traffic jam will ease traffic congestion

 The National Land Commission has said more than 1,500 families to be displaced by the Eldoret Southern Bypass will be compensated.

NLC chairman Muhammad Swazuri said the families will be paid before the project starts and after land acquisition is finalised.

The road will stretch from Cheplaskei to Maili Tisa. The families have threatened to disrupt the project over delayed compensation of more than Sh1 billion.

They say the Sh5.6 billion project, funded by the African Development Bank, has taken almost a year with no clear communication on the compensation plan.

“We have given the government 21 days to compensate us or we evict the contractors from the site because the land still belongs to us,” said landowner Jane Kimaiyo.

The landowners accuse the NLC of delaying compensation, yet beacons have already been erected on the site.The bypass is intended to ease traffic in Eldoret town.

Landowner Joseph Samoei said they will stop any work on the project until they are paid.

“We signed agreements with NLC, but a year later we are not being told what is happening,” he said at a landowners’ meeting in Eldoret town on Thursday.

“They advised us not to plant trees on the land.” The commission sent experts, including surveyors, to Eldoret for a month to resolve compensation complaints. Swazuri said some of the issues are family land disputes.

“We are determined to ensure the project is completed as planned,” he said. Uasin Gishu governor Jackson Mandago has asked the Kenya National Highways Authority to put up a dual carriageway, as had been planned, instead of changing

the design.


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