Nairobi News

Must ReadWhat's Hot

Raila hits out at Ruto over Mavoko demolitions

By Mercy Simiyu October 17th, 2023 2 min read

Azimio leader Mr Raila Odinga has hit out at the government for allowing the ongoing demolition of private houses and other properties in Machakos.

In a show of solidarity with the hundreds of victims affected by the demolition exercise, Mr Odinga accused President William Ruto of going back on his pre-election campaign pledges and allowing the demolitions to happen.

Speaking in Mavoko, in the company of area Governor Wavinya Ndeti, Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka among other local leaders, Mr Odinga accused the Kenya Kwanza administration for presiding over the demolition of houses of worship.

He stated that it was unfortunate the demolitions were carried out during the rainy season.

“We demand investigation and accountability of everyone, private and public, involved in this,” Mr Odinga said.

Mr Odinga referred to the demolition exercise as a ‘forced eviction’.

He further termed the move a gross violation of human rights.

“What is going on here indicates a systematic disregard of recognized human rights standards on the part of the State. The affected families, some among the poorest of the poor and the upcoming middle class, have not only witnessed lifelong savings demolished and crushed to ashes.”

In his address, the opposition chief stated that innocent families who are in possession of title deeds have now been left to fend for themselves on the streets without basic shelter.

“Children who were learning in some of the schools here have seen their classrooms flattened into open fields, the upcoming exams notwithstanding.”

He noted that the demolition happened against Kenya’s 2009 Evictions and Resettlement Guidelines which require notice to be written or published in the official government gazette 90 days ahead of time.

“There was definitely no or inadequate prior eviction notice….Yet within minutes of a court ruling, people have lost their homes and their livelihoods. People have been left homeless and destitute, without means of earning a livelihood and with no effective access to legal or other remedies”

Also, Mr Odinga also questioned the urgent use of the land which led to demolition which was done greatly, overweighing people’s lives and savings.

“What is this urgent use that could not allow people time to move out by, say, next year? Are there personal interests riding on the guise of public interest? Does the East African Portland Cement understand that there are things people can do to fight back and even end its existence as a company? We are talking about people who most likely used the company’s cement to construct houses only for those same houses to be destroyed in the name of the company?”

Also read: Senator Karen Nyamu: My dad altered my dream of becoming a beauty queen

Lands CS Alice Wahome warns Kenyans on land transactions