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SGR should promptly compensate residents

For some time now, some residents in Kajiado North Sub County in Kajiado County and other areas have been staging protests to demand their right to be compensated for land they gave up so that the second phase Nairobi-Naivasha Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) line could be constructed.
Concerns have been raised as a lot of time has been wasted even as legitimate land owners resorted to demonstrations in a bid to fast-track compensation for their land which, in some cases, was compulsorily acquired to allow construction of the Nairobi-Naivasha railway line. The compensation exercise which, otherwise should have been a straightforward matter, has been compounded as the contractor building the second phase of the standard gauge railway line has been engaging in a tussle with land owners over delayed dues. For one, the land owners seem to differ over claims of under-compensation while those in other sections appeared to have been compensated at higher rates.
Accusations have, too, been levelled at the National Land Commission (NLC) over issues to do with valuation of property displaced by the railway line, with the owners alleging that they have been subjected to untold suffering, through no fault of their own, as they wait to be compensated. Claims of bias, unfairness or discrepancies in payment rates should be looked into promptly and resolved.
All efforts should be made by the authorities concerned to ensure that the locals whose land the railway line passes are compensated in accordance with the law so the mega project can go ahead smoothly. More delays mean incurring more losses for both the contractor, National Government and locals, who have surrendered their land to allow construction of the project.

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