Residents of Uasin Gishu County who will be forced to relocate to pave way for the ongoing construction of Eldoret town bypass will be forced to wait a little longer to be fully compensated.
Unless Parliament increases the amount of money allocated in the proposed 2019/2020 budget, a large percentage of those affected by the bypass may not be paid any time soon.
The 1, 025 persons affected by the project are expected to be paid a total of Sh. 4.2 billion as compensation, but only Sh. 756m is allocated in the 2019/2020 proposed budget.
The affected individuals now want their elected leaders to push parliament to increase the allocation terming the proposed amount as “peanuts.”
A resident, Kipkorir Menjo said it will take the government several years to clear compensating the residents along the bypass corridor that traverses through Kesses, Kapseret and Turbo constituencies.
“If the government continues to provide such small amounts, some of the landowners may die before seeing any
compensation,” said Menjo at Kapseret on Wednesday during a consultative meeting between the residents, National Land Commission (NLC) officials and other government officers.
Last week, the land owners threatened to move to court to stop construction of the bypass if the government does not clear their compensation by end of June 2019.
However, the government allayed fears of the residents that the delay in paying them was underhand tactics to make them give up the chase for payment, saying the residents will be paid in phases.
The NLC acting Director Valuation and Taxation, David Mburu promised that 113 of the affected land owners will receive Sh. 376m within a period of three weeks.
The amount is what remained of the first tranche of Sh. 530m released by Treasury to Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) to pay the residents who have given up their land for the project.
Mburu was however categorical that only those who will have presented all relevant documents and are on the payment list will be paid.
“As NLC we shall follow due process to ensure we pay only genuine land owners”, he stressed.
By Kiptanui Cherono