Villagers demand removal of dumpsite from present site

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Mr David Ndirangu Wachira from Gikeu village,Karima ward,  Othaya in Nyeri County displays drugs that he is taking due to chest complications he claimed were occasioned by environmental pollution from the Gikeu dumping site in the locality.

About 400 villagers of Gikeu area, Karima ward of Othaya Constituency in Nyeri County have demanded the immediate re-location of a dumping site from their locality.

The irate villagers yesterday said the dumping site is putting their health at risk with some claiming to be suffering from chest complications occasioned by inhaling smoke from burning waste emptied by the County government.

The situation is aggravated by the current heavy rains pounding the region with contaminated water from the dumpsite flowing into fresh water sources used by the villagers.

“This parcel of land was left intact by our forefathers during land consolidation as a swamp where people could fetch water and take their livestock to drink,” said a villager, Jacob Gichohi.

Gichohi added that the fresh water has been polluted including that in boreholes that villagers depend on as there is no piped water.

“Sometimes back health officials took samples of water from our boreholes for analysis and concluded that it was contaminated and unfit for human consumption and irrigation,” Gichohi said.

The villagers said their pleas to the Nyeri county government to stop emptying refuse at the site have fallen on deaf ears and on Tuesday this week, they protested by digging trenches across the road leading to the site to prevent refuse trucks form accessing the area.

They at the same time appealed to the national government to come to their rescue accusing the devolved unit of putting their health and that of their children at risk.