May 10, 2021

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Juja Residents Up in Arms Over a Factory Dumping Medical Waste in River Ndarugu

Residents of Muthara village in Juja, Kiambu County have protested against a recycling plant that has allegedly been quietly dumping medical waste along Ndarugo River or on any open space putting them at the risk of contracting diseases.

The irate locals who held demonstrations that saw demolition of Tranbiz Enterprise Limited walls regretted that the plant has been dumping used cotton wool and syringes with traces of blood at the river from which they source water for domestic use.

Chanting songs against the factory, the furious residents led by Hannah Wanjiru, the residents claimed that the danger lurking in the discarded medical waste has resulted in numerous miscarriages and other infectious diseases.

They said they have no single idea where the hospital wastes come from or why they are dumped by the same river they draw water.

Angered by the fact that they have numerously complained to local administration with no action, the residents said they will be forced to take law in their own hands and destroy the factory equipment before closing it down if their three-day closure ultimatum is not complied to.

The aggrieved residents also pointed an accusing finger to Kiambu leaders and the National Environment Management Authority entities they said have failed to control factory waste disposal.

Virginia Murugi, another local regretted that the only river that they depend on for clean water has been turned into a poisonous haven.

The locals now want the factory closed and the quarry site it has been operating from filled to protect them from contracting diseases.

However, the factory representative Ronny Mwongera said they have obtained all the requisite business operational documents including Nema approvals.

He said that the factory offers incineration and recycling services from materials he said they have been segregating and reducing the waste to avoid it remaining within their environment.

While dismissing claims that they have been disposing of their wastes to Ndarugo River, the representative said they have been striving to keep the environment safe and clean for the well-being of the residents.

Area MCA Julius Macharia said the factory did not engage all stakeholders during the public participation.

He said that while the county government of Kiambu has tried to deliberate on the matter, their efforts have been blocked by the fact that Nema had already approved operations of the company.

He said that various agencies have been taking them in circles and called for collaboration between the national and county government leaders in resolving the matter that has elicited heated tension in the area.

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