Busia Senator Okiya Omtatah on Wednesday tabled a petition on behalf of residents from Uyombo Village in Kilifi South rejecting a Ksh540 billion nuclear reactor project.
The residents raised fears about the impact of the nuclear reactor would have on their lives including a potential threat to their right to life, health and a clean environment.
According to the Senator, the Nuclear Power and Energy Agency (NUPEA) did not give enough justification to have Kenya’s first nuclear reactor set up in Uyombo village.
As such, the petition prayed that NUPEA and other stakeholders identify other sites to put up the project that the country is banking on to boost its energy capacity.
A photo of a nuclear power plant.
Additionally, locals in Kilifi South Constituency want to know the formula used to arrive at the decision to identify Uyombo as the best site for the project.
The residents also want NUPEA officials who recommended Uyombo village as a preferred nuclear reactor site prosecuted.
The locals argue that the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) should move with speed to determine if taxpayers’ money was misused during the feasibility study.
Omtatah while tabling the petition, regretted that residents from Uyombo were being denied title deeds in anticipation of repossession of their land for the project.
In September, police officers dispersed a meeting where the community was being educated on the effects of the nuclear reactor on the environment.
The meeting had been organised by the Centre for Justice, Governance and Environment Action and its disruption made the residents read a sinister move from the government.
Kenya announced in August 2020, that the multibillion project would be built through funding from private investors.
At the time, NUPEA announced that the nuclear reactor was a long-term plan to bring down fuel costs which were brought about by receding water levels in hydroelectric dams.
Additionally, nuclear power is seen as an effective way to cut carbon emissions from the power-generating sector.
Masinga multipurpose dam commissioned in 1982