Meeting notes SCRA-NEMA Tuesday 23rd February 2021

The meeting was scheduled for 3pm on Tuesday 23rd February at the Kwale Government offices in Mvindeni and started at around 3.05pm.


Wafula, NEMA

Musila, Tourism

Jassa Juma, NEMA (taking minutes)

Luciana, SCRA

Stan, SCRA

W opened the meeting explaining the presence of M as the opening of beach access roads falls under the tourism docket. W expressed his disappointment that Maureen and Macharia could not attend, especially as Maureen was the author of the report that was sent to the Cabinet Secretary. S explained that Maureen was on a benchmarking trip with the municipality board and that Macharia was on a field trip. M explained that KCG plans to gradually open all beach access roads, whereby the Maji and Bidi Badu (to be re-named into 2 Fishes) access roads are completed, Nakumat is awaiting a court order, as does Tradewinds (according to M this court order is imminent). As toilets are needed on public beaches, KCG has set aside space on the beach access roads to construct toilets. M also stated that those toilets would be fitted with biodigester pits to control liquid waste discharge. M also stated that EIAs have been undertaken regarding air pollution (smell) and an annual monitoring plan is in place.

W reiterated that toilets on public beaches are a necessity. KCG decided to install toilets and stalls along beach access roads and that this could be the solution to stalls erected directly on the beach.

W said the Leisure Lodge access road was blocked by LL with gates, toilets and a mosque and that they have been given a warning to re-open the access and remove buildings. S stated that SCRA agrees.

W said that the access between DBR and Waterlovers and the access at Neptune have been obstructed and/or narrowed and need to be reopened and restored to original width. S stated that SCRA agrees.

On Mwaepe access W stated that some land has been listed as grabbed and investigations are under way. W also stated that the restaurant blocking access is illegal and will be removed in due course. L stated that the area is unsafe and frequented by drug addicts, also the fishermen have no space for their boats. W said security is the job of county commissioner. S said that Hilary had agreed that some of the access road is on her land. L said that KFI is owned by Dr. Kumar. W said investigations are under way.

M: KCG is implementing projects by collecting opinions from wanainchi from ward level to sub-county, to county level and M stated that both wanainchi and SCRA will be heard. S stated that SCRA represents wanainchi as we represent all residents and not only wazungu. M: public participation forums revealed the need for toilets and changing rooms near beaches and a no-option should be avoided. M also stated that some erosion had taken place at Tradewinds access and land has to be recovered. L stated that cabro is expensive and other solutions to be considered and that cabro should not extend all the way to the beach to avoid litter and sand being washed into the sea.

On Mvureni access, W stated that both the cold room of fishermen and the restaurant are permanent structures and thus illegal and that the restaurant is wrongly located. W said that title investigations are under way, that the current structure have to revert to temporary structures and later be removed. No timeline was given. M also suggested that barriers can be put up to stop cars from driving and parking on the beach.

M stated that fish landing sites have been encroached upon by neighbours and need to be recovered. W said that they did a report on fish landing sites and agreed to a request by S to share this report with SCRA. W also said that the officer of fisheries is in charge of fish landing sites and that the national lands commission should be involved to repossess them.

On the restaurant at Congo mosque W stated that an investigation by the lands officer found that it is NOT located on riparian land, but confirmed that they have neither a NEMA nor a planning license. S pointed out that a stretch of 30 meters from a river bed is considered riparian land. W said that if the restaurant fails in obtaining licenses, it will have to be removed.

M said that it is necessary to develop a beach management plan and that the previous draft had been rejected by the county assembly. S insisted that this draft had not originated from SCRA, but was done by the hotel keepers association and that SCRA objected to several points therein. W suggested that even the national government should be involved in developing a beach management plan.

M stated that several big hotels and restaurants have encroached on the beach by erecting beach walls and seemed surprised when S stated that SCRA agrees.

W seemed upset by the statement in our report that there is no solid waste management by KCG on access roads. He also said that as Maureen is a board member of the municipality board and that it is the job of the board to support KCG in waste management. S explained that our report was written before the municipality board was established and before Maureen became a member thereof. W said that NEMA has licensed rubbish collectors who have to keep tracking documents on where they collect waste and where they dump it. W agreed to share a list of licensed waste collectors with SCRA to share with our members

S mentioned the existing zoning plan for Diani/Ukunda, but both M and W insisted that this plan had expired and a new plan is needed. SCRA offered their help in formulating a new plan.

At this point M excused himself to attend another meeting.

W then returned to the issue of informal structures on beaches and requested SCRA to use the term informal instead of illegal. He also stated that a plan has to be formulated to remove them. W also said that the Water Resources Authorities are in charge of riparian land and gave us contacts:

Regional director coast: Ahmed: 0737 920960, 0721 958098

Pollution in-charge: Dickens Riungu: 0781 022234, 0725 023099

On the quarries in Tiwi, W stated that landless people have grabbed land and are quarrying. He also blamed KPLC for providing them electricity, but stated that efforts are under way to close some of them. S pointed out that the quarrying is done at an industrial level and that more affluent people than landless squatters are behind this. S also pointed out that the quarries steal electricity from KPLC with illegal connections and that KPLC tried to stop this, but failed. S pointed out the security risks of the quarries and that they operate 24/7 despite the existing curfew. W pointed out that the county commissioner is in charge of security, but promised to engage him on this matter. W also said that they issue a notice of closure to the quarry in front of Amani, but that 1 or 2 quarries had been licensed.

Returning to sea walls, W stated that the erosive activity of oceans is increasing and that a shoreline management strategy has to be developed. He said environmentally friendly solutions have to be sought. L gave some examples of those. W proposes a study on shoreline erosion on plots with and without sea walls, similar to the Malindi estuary management plan. L will try to get hold of this one. L mentioned that sea walls threaten turtle nesting grounds. SCRA offered to participate in developing a Diani shoreline management plan.

On the development on plot 800/801, W refused to comment as the case is in court and NEMA is 1 of the respondents. S mentioned that SCRA had seen letters from NEMA and the Kwale department for environment and natural resources stating that at least part of the development should be stopped. No further comments on this issued waiting for courts to decide.

This concluded the points raised in our report to the Cabinet Secretary.

W agreed to listen to 2 more requests for advice from SCRA. S pointed out that there is currently noise pollution going on at Deemaz near Tandoori and that when curfew is lifted, noise pollution will become an issue again. W sated that noise pollution is devolved and that the KCG Director of Environment is in charge. W gave us his contact:

Dr. Indo Joseph, 0723 691406

W also said that this department is not very well funded. S offered that SCRA can make the decibel meter they purchased available to this department if W will help to get it calibrated and registered. SCRA is also willing to purchase an additional decibel meter if the same procedure is followed. W promised to look into this.

S mentioned the current jet ski menace by unlicensed operators. W promised to engage the Kenya Marine authority on this issue.

The meeting ended amicably at 5.30 pm and we look forward to collaborate with NEMA.

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