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Lamu leaders stormed out of a stakeholders’ meeting for the Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia Transport corridor project on Thursday.

The meeting held at Majlis Hotel on Shella island was called to discuss the acquisition of land for the Sh2.5 trillion project.

Governor Fahim Twaha, Woman Representative Ruweida Obbo, MPs Stanley Muthama (Lamu West) and Athman Sharif (Lamu East) led the walkout. 

The leaders accused the government of reneging on a promise to involve locals before making decisions. 

They said the commission has no right to allocate 70,000 acres to the Lapsset project before fully compensating landowners in Kililana and Mashunduani in Lamu West.

The NLC says they land will also cater for the Lamu Port, the Lamu-Lokichar crude oil pipeline and the railway line.

Part of the land will also be used for the controversial Sh200 billion coal power plant that will be set up in Kwasasi.

More on this: Lapsset project to be completed before 2018, Uhuru says on Lamu tour

Also read: Lamu leaders threaten to sabotage Lapsset project

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The leaders said the state is pushing for the project before all displaced people get their cash.

Shariff said, “Apparently, the government wants to offer alternative resettlement to residents whose land has been acquired for the coal project. Where is this land? The agreement was for people to get Sh800,000 per acre, no more nor less.”

Obbo wants the NLC to withdraw a title deed issued for the 70,000 acres until all loose ends are tied up.

Twaha said, “Land injustices in this region keep growing and leaders we are getting tired. People want to come and get land as if lacks owners. People have been displaced without being paid a dime. This is not fair, it must stop.”

The governor said people cannot sit in Nairobi and make decisions for the people of Lamu.

The leaders accused the government of failing to honour their initial agreement. They claimed the commission wants “to con locals of their land”.

Muthama said the state was frustrating attempts to have fishermen affected by dredging in the Lapsset project compensated. He said many fishing channels are slowly being sealed off and locals will lose their source of livelihoods. 

Petroleum PS Andrew Kamau, officials of the National Lands Commission and from the ministries of Land and Petroleum attended the meeting.

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