Politicians, rights defenders and the business community were on Monday back to the streets condemning the government for diminishing the region through the 100% standard gauge railway – SGR cargo handling.
Mombasa Senator Mohammed Faki said that demonstrations were unstoppable since Mombasa residents were feeling the pinch over the SGR order.
Addressing locals at Changamwe round about Monday morning during the demonstrations, Faki said Mombasa was facing economic hard times following the SGR order insisting that it should be quashed.
His sentiments were echoed by Mvita MP Abdulswamad Shariff Nassir and Nyali legislature Mohammed Ali who said the county was facing serious economic setbacks and that the order was oppressive.
[Political leaders from Left; Mvita MP Abdulswamad Shariff Nassir, Nyali Legislature Mohammed Ali and Mombasa Senator Mohammed Faki. Photo/ Ahmed Omar.]
“Mombasa should not bear the government sh. 5.8 trillion burden, road transport sector should as well get a fair share of the business,” he said.
On his part, Nassir admitted that Mombasa has experienced massive job losses following a shutdown of many clearing and forwarding companies that highly depended on the road transport for their growth.
“Mombasa is no longer a 24 hour economic zone, people are moving out of the County after they were forced to close down their economic activities,” he said.
Meanwhile, human rights defenders led by Haki Africa Executive Director Hussein Khalid have vowed to hard-press the government until it gives positive responses to the drastic economic problems facing Mombasa.
Mr. Khalid said not only Mombasa but the entire country especially towns along the Mombasa-Nairobi highway that highly depended upon the long distance transport have been highly affected.
He said the SGR protests will cover the whole country.
[First Action Movement leaders, Politicians and Human rights defenders during black Monday anti- SGR protests. photo/Ahmed Omar].
“How will the country prosper if we have 5,000 millionaires and 50 million poor Kenyans? It is totally unacceptable,” he added.
Muslim for Human Rights-MUHURI Chairperson Khelef Khalifa said Kenyans were tired of the government discriminatory trend.
He said SGR has not uplifted Kenyans living standards but has to a great extent overburden them.
Khalifa reiterated that ‘Black Monday’ was unstoppable
“Let all those who signed the SGR deal pay the debt we should not be forced to,” noted the human rights defender.