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End of an era for Nairobi landmark

A historic court ruling yesterday is set to draw the curtains on one of the most popular and well-known landmarks of Nairobi. It’s a place that features prominently in almost all of Nairobi pop culture, from urban graffiti to hip-hop videos. For most people born in Nairobi, it’s a place where their paths have crossed ways with in one way or the other, despite the fact that it’s all the way in Dandora. Soon it will be a thing of the past.

This follows a ruling by Justice Kossy Bor, who ordered the Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) to relocate Dandodra Dumpsite within six months.

Justice Bor directed NMS to establish a new environmentally friendly dumpsite within the same period.

Bor said in a case filed by residents of Mukuru and Korogocho that people have a right to a clean environment and NMS together with the National Environment Management Authority (Nema) should also clean up Nairobi and Athi River.

While the area does indeed present valid environmental and hygiene challenges, it happens to hold huge sentimental value to a number of the dwellers.

The judge said the court will review the progress made every four months, to ensure the rivers are clean up.
She said effluent is being discharged into the rivers at different points and that Nema should take measures to stop the illegal acts.

Justice Bor said Nema and NMS have a role to play in the protection of the environment and affording every person the opportunity to enjoy the right to a clean and healthy environment guaranteed by the Constitution.
The Judge also ordered Nema to clean the Nairobi River from the source to Sabaki River in Malindi and report on water quality every four months.

Dandora dumpsite covers over 30 acres and some residents of Korogocho, Baba Ndogo, Mathare and Dandora eke a living from scavenging the waste but expose themselves to health risks.

Section 9 of the Environmental Management and Coordination Act (EMCA) tasks Nema to co-ordinate the various environmental management activities being undertaken by lead agencies and promote the integration of environmental considerations into development policies, plans, projects and programmes to ensure the proper management and use of the environmental resources.

Section 87 of EMCA prohibits any person from discharging or disposing of any wastes in a manner that may cause pollution to the environment or ill health to any person.

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    Written by Joshua Wanga

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