Mombasa residents keeping off these houses for fear of ‘evil spell’
What was to be the Kenya’s first eco-city in the outskirts of Mombasa city has stalled for about 10 years due to fears of an evil spell cast on the project.
Villagers in Mwakirunge, North Coast, where 10 complete units ready for occupation stand idle, claim their grandfathers cast a spell on the project following a tussle on the acquisition of the land with the investors.
The villagers laugh whenever an outsider asks about the houses.
The multi-million shillings project was initially planned to have at least 6, 000 housing units plus a hospital, school, playground and recreation facilities, a police post, commercial centres and office blocks.
The design of the buildings was supposed to conserve the environment by utilising solar and wind energy as a source of electricity to tenants.
The housing units were to be two and three bedroom flats, together with three and four bedroom bungalows.
But the project quickly ran into headwinds after villagers protested what they claimed to have been forceful eviction from their land.
Joseph Kahindi 18, remembers vividly how the tussle between villagers and the investor started.
“I was very young, my grandfather used to construct the houses. But years later, wrangles emerged between residents and the investors. The construction stalled. Some people started living in the completed houses but our forefathers had cast a spell on it,” said Mr Kahindi.
He said his grandfather told him the houses were bewitched.
“They had cast a spell. Tenants started being possessed. The houses would be attacked by ants or they (tenants) could find themselves naked on the shores of Indian Ocean within Mwakirunge. We have seen wonders in this area,” he said.
EVICTED FROM LAND
Samson Mwinga, 53, claimed he was evicted from his land when the investors started construction.
“We were evicted and given other places nearby to live. It (the site) was my grandfather’s plot which I had inherited. There is witchcraft involved, our elders were angry when we were evicted. Ask around, others say there are snakes, others have been attacked by bees,” said Mr Mwinga.
A caretaker at the project said he cannot talk about the houses because he is not authorized.