Azimio chiefs; Raila and Kalonzo accuse government of insensitive following demolition of homes in Machakos after Ruto order.
Several locals who had purchased land and built homes in Athi River, Machakos County awoke to the sound of roaring tractors tearing down the buildings they had built and occupied for many years.
Following the demolitions, the opposition, led by Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka, charged the Kenya Kwanza administration with being callous, particularly in light of the challenging economic situation.
Raila wondered why the government would forcibly remove residents from their houses without providing an alternative.
Raila accused the Kenya Kwanza government of being insensitive to the plight of Mavoko residents.
“What is happening in Mavoko is a beastly act, and we condemn it. The government should stop that exercise and compensate the residents for the loss,” Raila said.
He said it was hypocritical for the government to talk about affordable housing for Kenyans but, on the other hand, turn around to destroy people’s homes.
Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka has blasted the government over the ongoing demolitions adding taht over 20,000 families have been left in the cold due to the demolition of homes.
“We should be treated with dignity,” Kalonzo said, noting that the bottom-up slogan by the Kenya Kwanza government had turned sour for Kenyans who were now struggling with the high cost of living.
Kalonzo said the land being claimed by EAPC should have been reverted back to the Machakos County government since their lease for mining limestone had elapsed.
“What has happened in Mavoko is a siege. It should not happen in this day and age,” he stated.
Kalonzo claimed that the cement company was not financially stable and was almost going insolvent, adding that the dispute should be settled in a humane manner without subjecting people to more suffering.
The demolitions comes Ruto ordered the Lands Ministry to revoke titles of land that have not been developed in Athi River for over 10 years.
“People who have held titles to pieces of land for 10 to 30 years without developing them be revoked so that we can give it to people who want to use this facility,” Ruto said.
At the heart of the battle is 4,298 acres of property said to be owned by the cement manufacturing company.
The prime land in question, LRNo 10424, is located along the Nairobi-Mombasa Road, south of Athi River Township in Machakos County.