MPs Furious With Patel Dam Management After Findings

  • The parliamentary committee on environment and natural resources expressed fury and shock over the failure by the management of Patel dam in Solai to produce licenses for the seven dams in the farm.

    Sofia Abdi Noor who is the committee's vice chair stated that a visit to the farm shocked the entire group after the management informed them all licenses were kept in Nairobi where the headquarters are located.

    Noor maintained the committee was not contented with the explanations since the documents should be kept on the farm where all operations are run.

    She noted that the management had been asked to submit documentation of all the dams at a sitting to be held in Nairobi at a later date.

    [caption caption="An Ariel view of the damaged village in Solai, Nakuru County,"][/caption]

    Njoro legislator Charity Kathambi, who is a member of the committee, reiterated the need to compensate the Solai dam victims.

    Kathambi further criticized the dam management noting that even though NEMA was not in existence when the dams were constructed, they should have had the dams inspected and certified after its formation.

    47 people were killed and hundreds of families displaced in the May 9 tragedy and apart from causing death and destruction of property, the raging floods from the burst Solai dam also washed away fertile soil, leaving the land unproductive.

    Residents have built temporary structures which they have been calling home since their houses were swept away.

    Learning also slowly picked up at Nyakinyua Primary School, which lost 14 pupils in the tragedy. Deputy headteacher James Wanjohi stated the school also lost its library, six classrooms, desks, a store and pit latrines.

    [caption caption="A family that survived the Patel dam tragedy"][/caption]

    As the families continue to pick up the pieces, they are waiting for compensation but some of the victims claim chiefs and their assistants included individuals who were not affected on the list of those to be compensated.

    A report by the Ministry of Interior and Co-ordination of National Government on May 29 showed that at least 223 families benefited from the State donations.