Kenya: Dongo Kundu Special Economic Zone Dream Inches Closer

22 October 2020

Government agencies are finalising the Resettlement Action Plan (RAP) for Dongo Kundu residents ahead of construction of a special economic zone (SEZ).

The agencies, including the National Land Commission, Kenya Ports Authority, national government as well as local leaders, have started a validation exercise to vet the beneficiaries of the Dongo Kundu SEZ from six villages in Likoni.

Last week, officials from NLC, KPA, national government, local leaders and committee representatives from the six villages met to review the process.

Coast Regional Coordinator John Elung'ata said those who will be affected by the major project will be vetted and rightfully compensated.

"The vetting exercise must be finalised. We are targeting only those who will be affected and their properties. I assure all the affected people that they will be compensated and the process will be transparent," the regional coordinator said at a meeting at Likoni ACK Hotel.

Mr Elung'ata said the vetting will help in identifying the affected residents to be compensated by the government.

"Names of people who are not beneficiaries will be removed from the list. We want only the genuine people to be compensated," he said.

He warned government officials against any corrupt dealings in the exercise.

"We won't allow people to tarnish the government's reputation by sneaking in fake names of beneficiaries. We want transparency and rightful beneficiaries," said Mr Elung'ata.

He urged residents to ensure names of the unaffected people are not sneaked into the list.

No corruption

On his part, NLC commissioner Kazungu Kambi said the commission will ensure there is no corruption.

He urged the residents to be honest during the vetting process.

"Give us relevant information and be factual. We will want to know how you have been affected and the compensation. There will be no corrupt dealings," he said.

Likoni MP Mishi Mboko said the government was losing a lot of money by compensating fake people.

She cited projects like the Standard Gauge Railway where, she said, the government lost a substantial amount of money in compensating fake people.

"We want NLC to be responsible and ensure only the affected people are compensated. We want taxpayers' money to be well used," she insisted.

More than 2,000 people from six villages, including Mwangala, Mbuta, Kaya Mtongwe, Tsije, Mrongondoni and Dongo Kundu will be affected by the mega project which will use over 3,000 acres of land.

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