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Ruto warns squatters on State land they will pay market rates

President William Ruto. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

President William Ruto has directed that Kenyans residing on government land and willing to pay the market value be spared from losing their homes through demolition.

Speaking in Kasarani, Nairobi, on Thursday, October 26, during the flagging-off of motor vehicles for education officers, Ruto said people occupying public land will have to pay the government the prevailing market rates.

"We do not want impunity, we will not agree to it, if you are on government land, prepare to pay the land on the market rate or we will show you, those are our terms," he said.

The president said the people who are willing should come forward and pay for the land at the market value after the government has done a valuation.

"The owners of the land should come forward and we solve the problem so that we create harmony," he said.

This comes weeks after the demolition of homes, churches, schools and business premises after the court ruled that East African Portland Cement Company (EAPCC) was the legitimate owner of the 12,000-acre land in Athi River.

The demolitions of houses on the over 4,000 acres of land LR N0. 10424 began after High Court Judge A Nyukuri, sitting at Machakos Environment and Land Court declared EAPCC the legitimate owner of the disputed piece.

The 4000-acre land is part of the 12,000 acres that the company owns as wasteland after mining.

The President was responding to pleas by Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja concerning people who had built their houses on the land at KISE.

"Your Excellency this land had over 70 acres but some people have built on the land and therefore the institution will remain with 50 acres. I request that we have the land regularised by them paying for the land," said Sakaja.

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