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National Land Commission faces legal hurdle on deed

COUNTIES
By BY WAHOME THUKU | August 1st 2013

BY WAHOME THUKU

Kenya: The National Land Commission faces a legal battle over its move to repossess what it claims to be illegally acquired public land.

A high school head has launched a court battle against the commission after it listed her land in Nakuru County as one of the parcels of public land with illegal titles.

The land is one of the many published by the commission in a notice on July 10, this year, as having been illegally acquired across the country.

Ms Elizabeth Nditi Njoroge, the head of Moi Forces Girl High School, has sued the commission challenging its move to take over the prime plot in Naivasha town worth millions of shillings.

She has also separately sued the government after a private firm Kenya Data Networks contracted to put up a State project entered the land and began construction work.

The company has been contracted by the Finance ministry and has been doing construction work on the land since April.

Kenya Data Networks pulled down a perimeter wall and blocked her from accessing the land.

The headmistress says she was allocated the land on November 11, 1996, and issued with a lease certificate on August 20, 2003.

The Commissioner of Lands had previously issued her with an allotment letter.

“I have been paying rates to the relevant authorities and I can’t be arbitrarily deprived my property as it’s protected under the Constitution,” she added.

The High Court stopped the construction by the Kenya Data Networks on July 9, but the following days the commission issued the notice informing the public that the land was public land with illegal title.

The commission said it had commenced investigations on titles as provided by the law.

It claimed that after reviewing its records and making site visits, it was of the view that the grants of the parcels listed were obtained illegally or irregularly.

The commission asked those with interest in the land to appear before it within 14 days from the date of the notice to make presentations.

Ms Nditi said the notice by the commission was published when the dispute over the encroachment of the land by Kenya Data Networks was already in court.

She claims the commission has singled her maliciously and that the notice was issued in bad faith.

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