By: Dishon Amanya
The Government has revoked the Gazettement of the Chetambe (Webuye) Hills Forest Land that would have displaced tens of thousands of families in Webuye East.
Addressing affected families at Sipala High School, Environment Cabinet Secretary Hon Keriako Tobiko announced the withdrawal of the gazette notice that affected residents who had not been compensated.
Today’s move is a culmination of several meetings that were initiated by CS Eugene Wamalwa (Defence) and Governor Wycliffe Wangamati.
In a June meeting in Mombasa last year, CS Eugene and Governor Wangamati asked President Uhuru Kenyatta to revisit the gazettement of Chetambe (Webuye) Hill Forest Land, saying the move puts at risk lives and livelihoods of thousands of residents.
The duo called on the President to put on hold the process of eviction to allow for proper consultations and public engagements before anything happens.
Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka could not stop to express his joy on the degazettement of the chetambe hill saying that the move would have left thousands of people from the area evicted from their homes.
“ This is a perfect new year gift to members of the Tachoni community and all the other people of Webuye East Constituency that would have been displaced if the gazette notice was affected.” Said Lusaka.
However, he could not forget to thank the president for listening to the pleas of the area residents through their leaders from Bungoma County and Western region at large.
There have since been several follow up meetings with residents and site visits to find a lasting solution to the problem.