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NLC disowns ownership documents for Sh500m land in Nairobi

By Moses Michira | Published Fri, April 27th 2018 at 00:00, Updated April 26th 2018 at 23:12 GMT +3
National Land Commission (NLC) Chairman Muhammad Swazuri flanked by Chair of Land valuation and Tax Committee Tom Konyimbih (left). [David Gichuru/Standard]

National Land Commission (NLC) has disowned resolutions purporting to award prime parcels of land to self-help groups in Nairobi.

The commission dismissed the letters, on whose strength two self-help groups have claimed land ownership, as forgeries.

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The NLC Chairman Muhamad Swazuri accused unnamed commission staff of aiding members of the two organisations to get the “fake” documents, and which had been used to push out legitimate owners of the land.

The ownership battle over the 42 parcels, registration numbers Nairobi/Block82/7812 - 7855, with an estimated value of at least Sh500 million, has previously ended in violent conflict, prompting the intervention of police.

Prof Swazuri told police investigating an incidence of violence and malicious damage to property that the ownership documents presented by the self-help groups could not be verified.

“Please note that the purported determination is a forgery and cannot be attested to by the Commission. I hereby attach the copy for your further action,” wrote Antipas Nyanjwa, NLC Deputy Director of Investigations and Forensic Services.

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His determination puts an end to a long-drawn battle for the prime land in Donholm Estate, Phase 8.

Police attached to the Buru Buru division were investigating a case where three members of the self-help groups were arrested on several charges, including trespass.

Sought help

Area OCS Edwin Mugera had sought NLC’s help to know the ownership of the contested land. “Please confirm to us the position of the previous cases handled by your office. We are requesting for the minutes approving the determination if any,” Mr Mugera wrote to Swazuri, referring the groups’ claim that a meeting held with the NLC agreed to grant ownership to squatters, who are members of the two groups.

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The commission had in a previous communication asked the Embakasi Police division to ignore other documents which the claimants had presented when they sought to be aided to access the land as the standoff ensued. “By this letter, kindly advise all your commanders not to aid entry or invasion of any property using this ‘determination,’ as the matter is still pending before the Commission,” wrote the commission.