Residents of Ziwa Machine village in Soy Constituency are up in arms over a dam constructed by Lake Victoria Works on a resident’s farm without his consent, which they say has already claimed five lives, including a student from Ziwa Technical Training Institute.
Imam Ziwa Mosque Hassan Idi Farah, whose farm the dam was built on, has written to the Environment Department and other relevant authorities requesting the dam be fenced, but his pleas have fallen on deaf ears.
“This dam has taken over five lives so far, and we live in constant fear of more deaths,” Farah lamented to the press. “I demand compensation of Sh121 million so I can hand over the farm for the project’s completion and allow for fencing to prevent further tragedies.”
Farah’s title deed, Moisbridge/Hassan Iddi Farah/Block 1 /Ziwa/826, clearly indicates ownership of the land. He claims a Ministry of Lands valuation placed the compensation amount at Sh12 million, but the government has been playing cat and mouse with him instead of settling the debt.
“I’ve been to the Lands Ministry, the Environment Ministry, and even the County Secretary’s office, but nothing has been done,” Farah said. “I humbly call upon Governor Dr. Jonathan Bii to intervene and ensure I receive my rightful compensation.”
Emmanuel Koech, a resident who has retrieved seven bodies from the dam, echoed Farah’s concerns, stressing the urgent need for fencing. “This dam is a death trap, and if nothing is done, more lives will be lost,” he warned.
Halima Hassan, another resident, highlighted the plight of women living in fear for their children’s safety near the unfenced dam. “Mosquitoes breeding in the stagnant water are also causing a malaria outbreak,” she added. “We urge the government to provide mosquito nets for our families.”
Nathan Murei and Raymond Seurei joined the chorus of residents pleading with Governor Bii to address the issue. Both emphasized the need for fencing, bridge construction, and compensation for Farah.
Mibei, the Chief Principal of Ziwa Technical Training Institute, revealed the institute lost a student to the dam in 2022. “He went swimming on a weekend and tragically drowned,” Mibei recounted. “I urge the County Government to take immediate action and fence the dam to prevent further loss of life.”