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Nubian leaders protest over demolition in Kibera to pave way for access road

The Nubians Rights Forum (NRF) has condemned the ongoing demolition in parts of Kibera slums to pave way for construction of a link road.

Some 29 families Makina and Mashimoni villages have been rendered homeless after their houses were flattened since the demolitions started one week ago.

COMPENSATION

NRF chairman Shafi Ali Hussein said the residents are being illegally evicted to pave way for construction of a link road between the DC grounds and the Makongeni area.

Hussein has filed a suit at the Land and Environment Court to stop the demolitions. He has sued the authorities for failure to provide an action plan for compensation and relocation of the affected residents.

Hussein said the demolitions have left many displaced and others at risk of losing homes.

“The road passes through the Mashimoni and Silanga villages (also marked for demolitions) which all fall within 288 acres granted to the Nubian Community under a title deed which is consequently a private property,” Hussein said.

NIGHT EVICTION

“People are being evicted at night. There was no notice of the intended demolitions and prior compensation as required. There was no public participation that would have given the affected people a chance to be heard and even plan to vacate.”

Speaking to the press at his office in Makina, Hussein said he mobilized residents to stop the demolitions through demonstrations and those behind the demolitions reached out at him after he moved to court.

He also said the police used excessive force to protect goons who were undertaking the demolitions and that he had been threatened with arrest.

Most residents were caught unawares when the demolitions started two Sundays ago.

“Kenya’s legal system is efficient on matters of demolitions and evictions. Tragically, there have been constant violations of the law and procedure when carrying out the same,” Hussein said.

THE VICTIMS

“No resettlement plan has been provided for the victims affected by the road construction.

Hussein and area residents blamed two MCAs for spearheading the demolitions while disregarding the predicament of the affected families.

Residents said no area national government administration officials were present when the demolitions were being undertaken.

“I have been loitering at night because I have nowhere to sleep. My neighbour offered to accommodate my wife because we have a two-month-old baby but I can’t live in that house,” said a young man whose house was demolished.

However, a section of the residents have welcomed the construction of the road to make the area accessible by fire engines and other emergency vehicles during tragedies.