What to do when the government acquires your land compulsorily

Most of the land cases take up to two years without being resolved. [File, Standard]

With the government's everyday developments at the county and national level, compulsory land acquisition is viable.

Many have raised concerns when it comes to the criteria and the process of compensation.

This is because most of the cases filled in court have taken up to two years without being resolved.

It is for this reason that the government recently created the office of the Land Acquisition Tribunal whose main aim is to solve the issues around compulsory land acquisition by the government.

According to the chair of the tribunal, Nabil Orina, individuals have the right to challenge the government.

“If the government has an intention to compulsorily acquire your land, then you have a right to go to the Land Acquisition Tribunal and challenge its intentions. The tribunal then has 60 days to hear the matter and give a verdict,” said Orina in an interview at Spice FM on Thursday, September 21.

The decision by the government can be challenged if one is not pleased with the compensation the government is offering or if the government did not follow the right procedures to acquire their land.

Additionally, one can fill a case if the government takes part of the land and the remaining does not serve its purpose.

For such a case, Orina explains that one can appeal to the tribunal that the government takes the whole land instead of a portion of it.

Further, he advises that land taken by the government from individuals should only be used for the benefit of the public.

“If the government has a public interest to which it wishes to take some private land to pursue public interest, then it can compulsorily do that. However, it can do that only if there is a public function that the land will serve,” he said.

The government can however fail to compensate landowners if the land has cases of land grabbing or if the land initially belonged to the government.

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