KPC has already received 278 claim forms and the verification process will be complete by end of February. Each of the claimants will receive payment through its insurer, CIC Insurance Company. The insurance firm is also engaging with Panafcon - the company that carried out the impact assessment study in the area - with the aim of studying their report to establish if there are matters that need further clarification.
KPC’s Chair John Ngumi today met hundreds of Thange residents together with Makueni Governor Prof Kivutha Kibwana and other community leaders to resolve the matter.
Ngumi said the company has already spent over Ksh 22million in CSR support in terms of clean water, food aid, and bursaries for needy students from Thange area.
“This CSR support will continue as per needs assessment as we strive to finish up the clean-up and the compensation process. KPC has invested heavily in the people of Thange because we want to transform people’s lives” said Ngumi.
Governor Kibwana hailed KPC for good corporate responsibility interventions in Thange and urged the government agency to continue with the support. However, he asked KPC to think about the possible long term effects of the spillage even as the compensation process begins.
“As you compensate the affected persons, it will be important that we take into account the long term health and environmental effects of this spillage so that if someone is affected several years down the road, they can still be considered,” Kibwana said.
Ngumi urged those who haven't filled the claim forms to fill them as soon as possible so that they are considered in Phase 2 of the compensation process. He said that 322 forms that residents have picked from the Deputy County Commissioner’s office in Kibwezi are yet to be returned.
He observed that KPC is committed to expedite compensation for residents whose lives were affected by the incident.
“The Thange incident has profoundly impacted the lives of many residents. KPC is fully committed to supporting those affected to get back on their feet in the shortest time possible,” said Ngumi.
The ageing Nairobi-Mombasa pipeline passes throughThange. The 14-inch Mombasa-Nairobi pipeline was constructed in 1978 and has been in operation for 39 years, way beyond its 25 year useful life.
Being the only pipeline that feeds the country and its neighbours, it has to be kept in operating state through constant repairs and inspection.
But the 450km Mombasa – Nairobi pipeline is currently being replaced to meet the region’s future petroleum needs. The new line, a Vision 2030 Shs 48 billion project, will include fire-fighting systems in new stations, installing energy efficient equipment and pipeline monitoring technology to ensure easy spotting of damages on the line.
The project is well underway and will be ready for commissioning this year. The new pipeline will improve the safety, reliability and efficient delivery of product to KPC’s customers and reduce the losses and damages caused by spillage on the current 14” Mombasa -Nairobi pipeline.