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Okoth Obado approves more than 1,000 acres for sisal, gold companies

Governor Okoth Obado. [Sammy Omingo, Standard]

The Migori County Government has leased 1,100 acres of land to two companies.

Governor Okoth Obado is said to have approved, at a meeting with his executives, 1,000 acres for sisal planting and 100 acres for copper and gold leaching in Nyatike Sub-county.

Al Naqel Holding sought space to grow sisal, while Al-Fateem Mining Company wanted to lease land for copper and gold leaching.

Al-Fateem Mining Company wrote to the governor expressing interest to lease Muhuru/Kadem 498 in Macalder-Kanyarwanda ward for disposal of mineral waste. The land was inherited by the county government from the defunct South Nyanza Council.

A paper was first tabled before the assembly on May 31 by the leader of the majority party for the approval of the leasing request.

The Migori County assembly’s Lands and Physical Planning Committee, chaired by Wasweta 2 MCA Patrick Aran, in a report uploaded on the assembly’s website showed the approvals were done by Obado and the executives.

Held meeting

On May 25, Governor Obado held a meeting which approved the lease.

On May 26, Migori County Secretary Christopher Rusana signed a letter to the assembly to start the process of leasing.

After the letter was tabled at the assembly on May 31, the assembly’s committee retreated to Kisumu between June 10 and 12, where they approved the decision to give 100 acres to the company to recycle gold and copper waste for a period of ten years.

In its letter, Al-Fateem Mining Company said it wanted to invest Sh1.3 billion as its initial capital -to process at least three tonnes of copper and gold ore a day. It would “partner with the county government through a corporate social responsibility”.

The mining company’s general director Musa Mohammed sent the request.

“The investment by the company is guaranteed to have an impact on the environment and economy of the county by getting rid of hazardous waste which has been a source of pollution to the environment, rivers and Lake Victoria,” Mohammed’s letter read in part.

The county approved the allocation of 1,000 acres on April 8, last year, to Al Naqel Holding.

The company had requested for between 1,500 and 2,000 acres to be leased to it for 25 years for sisal farming.