Senate orders Kenya Railways to build school

Jonathan kilapai shows cracks on a classroom wall at Olosirkon Primary school in Twala, Kajiado East. [Standard]
A senate committee has ordered the Kenya Railway Cooperation to build new classrooms at Olosirkon Primary School.

The rooms were destroyed following blasts of rocks by a Chinese contractor building the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) line passing near the school in Twala, Kajiado County.

The committee on Roads, Infrastructure and Housing, which is chaired by Kimani Wamatangi (Kiambu) labeled the classrooms “death traps” during their visit to monitor the situation following residents’ outcry.

Twala, Nkoroi and Kambi Moto locals told the committee the Chinese firm on the SGR project had occasioned serious environmental, health and social damage to them.

They listed dust, noise and vibration impacts at quarries as some of the adverse environmental and social effects they suffered in the hands of the Chinese contractors. Besides, they were concerned that the contractor left uncovered quarries all over.

Mr Wamatangi gave an ultimatum for the building of the classrooms as the school was ordered shut for the work.

“We have gone round and have seen the damages. We, therefore, order that Kenya Railway begins work of constructing new classrooms. The work should start in seven days,” he said.

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He went on: “The school is not habitable for our children. Cracks are everywhere and it might collapse any time.”

Parents at the school wanted the process made urgent.

Immediate action

“Our children are never settled, we are demanding immediate action that will save the lives of the children and their teachers,” said David ole Pasha.

He said previously they had been promised repairs at the school but nothing was done.

Former Kajiado Senator Peter Mositet faulted the committee for lethargy in following up on the matter that was reported to them two years ago.

“Another Senate committee (Environment and National Resources) visited a few months ago and promised to act in two weeks. Nothing was done,” said Mr Mositet.

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Kenya Railway CooperationOlosirkon Primary SchoolSGRajiado CountyTwalaImmediate action