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Landowners vow to derail Sh5b bypass project

By Stephen Rutto | February 27th 2021

The Cheplasgei-Kapseret-Maili Tisa bypass that cuts across the farms estates. [Peter Ochieng, Standard]

Landowners have threatened to move to court to stop construction of Sh5 billion Eldoret eastern bypass until they are compensated.

The project that was expected to be complete by the end of 2019 has been derailed by unending complaints over yet-to-be-paid compensation.

Yesterday, a move by the National Land Commission (NLC) to ask landowners to sign evacuation notices indicating they will be only be compensated for developments on the parcels of land sparked uproar.

At least 30 landowners from Jasho Farm and its environs in Kapseret declined to sign the notices.

Upon enquiry on why they were not being compensated for their land, NLC lawyer said full compensation would attract legal challenges, shocking the landowners.

A court battle pitting a group of squatters and the Commissioner of Lands emerged as one of the bottlenecks on compensation.

Lawyers representing Sirikwa Squatters Group have been writing to NLC since 2018, warning the commission of legal consequences should it compensate the landowners.

The squatters cited a ruling at the Eldoret Lands and Environment Court which declared them the bona fide landowners and revoked title deeds possessed by the current owners.

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