40,000 people have voluntarily relocated riverine reserves – CS

Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki has said 40,000 households have voluntarily relocated to the riverine reserves of the Nairobi, Mathare and Ngong rivers and other mini tributaries.

Kindiki through its Facebook said on Friday that the households were made up of 181,000 people.

He had toured the ongoing reclamation and rehabilitation works in various sections of Nairobi’s river corridor.

“The government notes with gratitude the cooperation of the public in the ongoing program to evacuate people whose presence in the riparian corridors within the Nairobi river ecosystem poses a serious danger to their lives, as seen during the floods last month,” he said.

The CS said the state has already fulfilled its promise to support each household with Sh10,000 to help them settle into alternative rental premises.

Kindiki noted that families will have priority in the Affordable Housing Program.

“The law prohibits the construction of buildings and structures within the 30-meter riparian corridor, obstructs rivers and exposes inhabitants of riparian reserves to serious danger of loss of life and property,” he said.

To prevent a new invasion, Kindiki said ditches are being dug and fencing the recovered riparian reserves and trees from the riparian ecosystem are being planted.

Therefore, he noted that the state will use paid labor from the local community and purchase seedlings from community organizations and local youth groups.

This, he said, will be in the recovery and regeneration of the ecosystem of the river corridor.

Subsequently, the Interior CS said Nairobi’s rivers will be unclogged, drained and rehabilitated.

He said the exercise will be carried out with recreational facilities to be established on both sides of the riparian reserves for public access and use free of charge.

“Restoring Nairobi’s river ecosystem will increase the safety of surrounding communities, eliminate the threat of illicit alcohol manufacturing and narcotics trafficking, and drive out dangerous criminals who use encroached river corridors as hideouts. “Kindiki said.

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