Jobless youth living around the Sh34 billion Itare Dam in Kuresoi, Nakuru County have called on the Rift Valley Water Services Board to stop hiring outsiders and give them the jobs instead.
Led by a local youth leader Segut Cheruiyot, the youths turned up at the construction site in Ndoinet forest claiming that the Italian company (CMC RAVENNA) had hired youths from others areas instead of giving the locals 30 percent job opportunity.
“The people who are working here are outsiders. Our youths have been sidelined yet they have the skills to undertake the same tasks. Locals should come first in this project as stated in the law,” said Cheruiyot
The angry youths stormed the construction site and threatened to hold disrupt the ongoing activities if their demands are not met.
Cheruiyot said that it was their right to have the jobs reserved for them adding that President Uhuru Kenyatta had clearly stated that locals affected by government projects should be prioritized.
Robert Kipkoech, a resident, said the youths were demanding both skilled and unskilled employment chances in respect to their merits.
He added that apart from reducing water shortage in Nakuru and neighbouring counties the project should also promote local economy through job creation.
“Billions will be spent on this project and we expect that locals get a share of it through the jobs available. People living along the way through which the water tunnel is being constructed should also be considered,” Kipkoech said.
Nakuru County Deputy Governor Joseph Rutto and Kuresoi North legislator Moses Cheboi arrived at the site and managed to calm the angry residents.
Rutto promised to forward their grievances to the respective authorities to ensure they get the jobs they were demanding which include machine operators, plant operators, artisans, technicians, lab technicians among others.