The Star (Nairobi)

10 November 2012

Kenya: Lari MP, Residents, Councillors Market Standoff Continues

Lari MP David Njuguna, a section of councillors and residents have differed over the construction of a market in the district. Councillors at the Kiambu County Council have twice clashed with residents over the Sh9.5 million Economic Stimulus Package market.

Yesterday, Kirenga councilor, who is the MP's rival and Nyambari councilor, his supporter, clashed at a meeting at Kirenga shopping centre over the matter.

The MP and residents want the market be built at Kirenga his home area instead of the lobbied expansion of Soko Mjinga market which is along the Nairobi-Nakuru highway.

About 377 residents led by Kinale ward councilor Titus Kiratu and Kiambu County Chairman of National Chamber of Commerce and Industry Thinguri Warwathe took the MP to court last year and last month the court ruled on the case.

The court ruled that the council should seat and decide where the market should be built and last week, 23 councilors met and looked at the possibilities whether to put the market at Soko, Kirenga, Nyambare and Kagwe where Kirenga got one vote, Kagwe 11, Nyambare 0, and Soko Mjinga got six votes.

That's when the area councilor Chege Thiarara opposed and the residents have vowed to take the council to court over their decision to take the ESP market to Kagwe where they claim is about 15 kilometers from the highway.

A trader, Wanjiki Waweru said, "Kirenga is one of the well doing markets which need to be upgraded to a modern market. It serves Kiambu County with food while Kagwe is far from the highway."

Councilor Thiarara said that he tried to convince the councilors to have the market built at Soko or Kirenga where he cited business was doing well to no avail. However, the residents blamed the MP of starting off a fight that he has not been able to bring to an end.

They claimed that he used his political powers to take the marlet to his home place but now it has taken another dimension. Efforts to get comments from the MP were futile as his phone went unanswered but yesterday, he was overheard in a local radio station claiming that he does not need a market in his constituency as the once which are existing are enough.

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