Irate residents protest sand harvesting in Machakos
Residents of Masinga and Yatta constituencies in Machakos County have held demonstrations protesting sand harvesting, which they say has interfered with their water sources.
Led by Ekalakala MCA Isaac Muinde and his Ndalani counterpart Stephen muthuka, the residents barricaded roads while threatening to set on fire all Lorries belonging to sand harvesters.
According to the area locals, the sand harvesters have continued to endanger their lives by interfering with their only source of water.
They further accused sand harvesters of allegedly destroying graves while looking for sand, saying that the move could bring a curse to the community
The MCAs faulted Maringa area chief for allegedly conspiring with sand harvesters for his own selfish interests.
The residents seized a lorry and drove it to Masinga Police Station.
In 2014, Machakos county assembly passed a law that banned sand harvesting to save the dying rivers
According to the Sand Harvesting Act 2014, sand harvesting should be carried out by few licensed groups at designated areas, at least 50 metres from rivers.
Last year, there were cases where two sand harvesters, one from Kangundo and the other from Masinga, were reportedly buried alive after sand collapsed on them during harvesting.
Areas mostly affected by illegal sand harvesting in the county include Masinga, Yatta, Mwala, Kathiani and Kangundo districts.
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