An environmental lobby group, Clean Mombasa CBO, has faulted the Mombasa county government for failing to close the VOK dumpsite in Nyali sub-county.
The group said that the dumpsite is illegal and continues to pose a health risk to thousands of residents living around the area.
Addressing the media in Mombasa, Clean Mombasa CBO Chairperson Dr Edwin Muinga Chokwe asked the Mombasa county government to immediately shut the dumpsite.
He also asked the county government to immediately issue an approval to the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC) to construct a perimeter wall around the land.
“The VoK illegal dumpsite should be closed immediately and KBC should be allowed to construct a perimeter wall to stop further dumping,” said Dr Muinga.
The county has since 2016 refused to issue an approval for the construction of a perimeter wall around the 22-acre parcel of land belonging to the defunct Voice of Kenya, now KBC.
At one point, Mombasa governor Hassan Joho led a group of residents and county askaris to bring down a perimeter wall that was being constructed by KBC, further escalating the row between the county and the state-owned media.
Muinga said it is saddening to see that the county government also seemed to be a player in the dumping of solid waste at an unsanctioned landfill.
He said the dumpsite posed a health threat to locals as a number of residents have complained of chest pains due to continuous inhalation of the smoke emanating from the burning waste.
“They have refused to give KBC the authority to build a perimeter wall, they have also failed to enforce clean-up of the area, although individuals and other private sectors have also joined in dumping waste at the site, the buck stops with the county,” he said.
He further called on the county to fence all dumpsites and implement modern recycling and garbage management methods.
He said this will lead to a clean environment and provide jobs to the youth, hence mitigate grinding poverty.
In November last year, the national government ordered for the closure of the dumpsite.
This was after the environment Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) Mohamed Elmi led a team of senior government officials from the National Environmental Complaints Committee and National Government Administration officers on a tour of the dumpsite.
KBC Managing Director Dr Naim Bilal wondered why it has taken long for the Mombasa county government to shut down the dumpsite on the parastatal’s land.
[Mountain of garbage at KBC land in Bombolulu, Mombasa County].
“We have contractors who are ready to move with speed and erect parameter fences around the land but our efforts towards this end have been thwarted several times by the county authorities” he said.
Dr Bilal said KBC has a land utilization plan in place but its implementation has been in limbo due to the long standing tussle with the county.