NEMA Finalizes EIA on Lamu Port: Despite Works Having Already Commenced and Tender Awarded

Heeding to the concerns of the community submitted through written and online petitions last week, The National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA), yesterday publicized the final report of the Lamu port three berths and opened the process up for public comments.

A week ago, Save Lamu discovered that the EIA was shared to select few stakeholders and did not open up the process to others, especially community members and the Lamu Port Steering Committee. This led to Save Lamu and other interested individuals sending hundreds of letters to NEMA to request for more time to review the report as well as demand a public forum.

Despite the now publication of the EIA, many community members still perceive the process as putting wool over their eyes as the construction work of some of the infrastructure already began since a year ago, the tender was already announced in December 2012, and now awarded. This is contrary to the EMCA act where financing and tendering should also not commence until the completion of the EIA and awarding of license to the project party. As such, the legal petition against NEMA and other related parties that was filed by Save Lamu and nine other community groups on January 25th, 2012 is still being pursued in the courts.

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