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Confusion over plan to move Dandora dumpsite to Ruai

Confusion reigns over plans to move the Dandora dumpsite to Ruai as the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) and Nairobi County continue to issue conflicting statements several years after the plan was mooted.

Nairobi County officials maintained they were forging ahead with the plan even as the KCAA director-general Gilbert Kibe said the agency had convinced City Hall not to relocate the dumpsite to Ruai, a Jomo Kenyatta International Airport flight path.

“We have just halted the plan to study the issues that KCAA has raised before coming up with the way forward,” said Peter Kimori, the county executive in charge of the environment.

MOVEMENT OF BIRDS

Mr Kimori said the study would help them to understand the movement of birds, which KCAA said pose danger to aircraft.

KCAA said that relocating the dumpsite to Ruai, 10 kilometres from JKIA, would breach the International Civil Aviation Authority (ICAO) requirement that such a facility be located 13 kilometres from a runway.

Mr Kibe said that bird strikes could lead to fatal accidents or major damage to aircraft .

“We have been in discussion with the county government and they agreed not to continue with the proposed plan of the dumpsite at Ruai as we have explained to them the dangers that it poses to aircraft,” said Mr Kibe.

“When a dumpsite is near an airport it immediately creates a hazard to aircraft because of the birds that fly around there,” he added.

KCAA said last month said that it had successfully blocked plans to relocate the approximately 250,000 m2 Dandora dumpsite to Ruai but the county government seems not have abandoned the plan.

As the aviation regulator, KCAA is mandated by the Ministry of Transport anbd Infrastructure to manage, regulate and operate a safe and economically sustainable aviation industry.

ENCROACHMENT

Other problems caused by the dumpsite would include obstruction of the flight path and encroachment on land on the path.

No structures are authorised along aircraft pathways so as to facilitate emergency landings.

Mr Kibe cited Wilson Airport in Nairobi as severely affected by encroachment on unauthorised areas and unplanned residential development.

The grabbing of Wilson Airport land has led to the proliferation of real estate developments on the flight path, posing a security risk.

Kenya Airports Authority said that hundreds of acres of the airport’s land were grabbed and allocated to third parties.