Three activists have sued the Coca-Cola Company for allegedly destroying a sacred fig tree planted by ODM leader Raila Odinga.
The tree was standing at Posta Grounds, Homa Bay town, and had been planted by Raila seven years ago.
Evance Oloo, Micheal Kojo and Walter Opiyo from Homa Bay County told a court in Homa Bay that beverage making company should facilitate Mr Odinga to visit Homa Bay and plant another tree at the same spot.
The tree is locally referred to as “Bongu.”
The trio alleges that on March 25, 2017, a Toyota pickup belonging to Coca-Cola Bottlers crashed into “Bongu” while reversing. Those who frequently watered the tree reported the matter at Homa Bay Police station under OB number 16/25/3/2017.
Justice George Ongondo of the Environment and Land Court in Migori scheduled the case for June 21.
The respondents include Coca-Cola Company Limited, Kisii Bottlers, and Almasi Beverages.
The multinational beverage company is said to have made attempts to replace Bongu with a replica but this failed to placated the residents.
It said that Raila planted the tree on August 2, 2014 when he toured Homa Bay town for a political function. His supporters believe the tree was meant to salvage the region from political and economic doldrums.
In central Kenya, the fig tree also known as “Mugumo” (scientifically Ficus Sycamores) is considered sacred. It used to serve as an altar for burnt sacrifices before the coming of Christianity.