A group of Bungoma
activists have moved to court to block the proposed construction of the
multi-billion shilling River Nzoia dam. In their case filed at the Eldoret High
Court, the group said the dam is being constructed to supply water for
irrigation, sand harvesting and to generate power.
They further stated
that the construction of the dam, funded by the World Bank, will displace more
than 80,000 people. Joseph Makokha said the residents have strongly opposed the
move saying they were not consulted. "If constructed, the dam will affect
the livelihood of many residents who derive their living from farming,"
The residents said
they have lived in the area for decades, and vowed that they will not allow the
government to evict them. He said projects should be taken to Budalangi where
it will benefit the residents and save them from frequent flooding caused by
the rains. "We have heard that we will be compensated Sh150,000 per acre
yet an acre of land this days goes for Sh500,000," the lawyer said.
The case appeared
before Justice Asangalala Mushilla, who issued a directive to NEMA, the
Attorney General Office, Lands Office and Ministry of Water, to present their
papers to the court to show cause why they needed to construct the dam. "I
have given the above ministries a 30 day notice before the case proceeds for
hearing on October 29," said the judge.