Kenyans Irked As Oguna Says Gov’t Has Formed Committee To Probe Kariobangi Evictions

Demolitions at Kariobangi North on May 4, 2020 [Photo/Courtesy]

Government Spokesperson Cyrus Oguna has come under sharp criticism over comments that the state is probing recent demolitions in Nairobi that left thousands homeless.

The government carried evictions in Kariobangi North and Ruai areas last month forcing over 7000 people to spend the night in the cold in a bid to create space for the construction of Kariobangi Waste Sewerage Treatment plant.

The government ignored court orders to carry out the evictions at a time Nairobi was experiencing heavy rains and Covid-19 restrictions exposing residents particularly children to diseases.

In an interview with NTV on Wednesday, Oguna said that the government is concerned in the manner in which the demolitions were conducted.

Oguna admitted that the timing of the demolitions was ill-informed considering the current Covid-19 pandemic.

Read: Why Demolitions In Nairobi Cannot Wait Beyond September 2020 : Uhuru’s Northlands City Factor

He added that a special committee has been formulated to probe the matter.

“We had the Covid-19 outbreak and it was also a very cold season. You realise that some of the people who were evicted had title deeds and the land has been owned by the Nairobi Water and Company for some time. That is why we are also investigating,” Oguna said in an interview on NTV.

“The land had been earmarked for expansion of various infrastructural developments in as far as sewer and water are concerned in Nairobi.”

But a section of Kenyans questioned Oguna’s remarks accusing the government of poor coordination. They argued that the evictions could have waited until the nation recovers from the ongoing crisis that has left many people jobless.

Read Also: Senator Susan Kihika Criticises Uhuru for Extending Curfew while Demolitions Are Carried Out at Night

According to some, the government is wasting public resources in the probe yet the damage has already been felt.

This comes at a time the government is also reported to be planning more demolitions in 12 areas in the city to reclaim reserved land for the construction of reservoirs to hold water from the Northern Water Collector Tunnel.

Areas mapped out for demolitions are Karura, Loresho and Gigiri reservoirs, Kahawa West, Kabete and Karen Treatment Ponds as well as the Dandora, Kariobangi and Eastleigh Sewerage plants.

The Ministry of Water insists that for the city to become habitable for its growing population, tough decisions have to be made to reclaim the reserved parcels of land.

Read Also: Hundreds Left Homeless Following Night Demolitions In Ruai

Here are some of the reactions online on Oguna’s remarks:

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Written by Wycliffe Nyamasege


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