Residents warned over illegal sand harvesting

Residents of Kathiani Sub County have been warned against engaging themselves in illegal sand harvesting which has become rampant in the area.

Speaking Thursday at Mitaboni trading centre, area Assistant County Commissioner Geoffrey Omoding said the business which thrives in Machakos County was a big threat to environment and should be stopped forthwith.

Omoding cited the recent collapse of the Kathiani Bridge as one of the effects of illegal sand harvesters warning the government will not tolerate those out to destroy the area’s waterways.

“Sand harvesting is a serious threat to our environment and should be stopped forthwith. Anyone found carrying out this business will face the full force of the law as deterrence to others,” said the administrator.

The commissioner said the government was doing everything in its power to ensure illegal harvesting of sand is eradicated in the area by slapping heavy penalties on the culprits.

He said in 2015, the owners of two lorries which were nabbed ferrying sand from Mitaboni area were fined Sh 1 million each by a local court.

“We want to caution those who might be planning to engage themselves in this seemingly lucrative business that the fine for this offence is Sh 1 million. This should therefore be a warning to all that the government is taking this matter seriously since it is the only way we can be able to safeguard our environment and water sources,” he added.

He however hailed the residents for their support in maintaining law and order and urged them to continue cooperating with security agents to improve security in the area.

By Samuel Maina