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NLC revokes illegally acquired title deeds

Friday February 1 2019

title deeds

Lands Cabinet Secretary Farida Karoney addresses the media during her courtesy call to Kisii Governor James Ongwae (right) on February 1, 2019. She said her ministry is reforming land registries in the country for efficient service delivery. PHOTO | RUTH MBULA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

RUTH MBULA
By RUTH MBULA
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The National Land Commission has revoked 10 title deeds that were fraudulently acquired in Kisii County.

This follows a public land audit by the commission last year that showed that at least 600 parcels of public land had exchanged hands fraudulently in Kisii Town.

During a courtesy call to Governor James Ongwae on Friday, Lands Cabinet Secretary Farida Karoney said there will be more revocations in the coming days.

Ms Karoney also announced that all officials in the 66 land registries nationwide will be reshuffled in a bid to enhance service delivery.

"I am embarrassed that my ministry is famous for all the wrong reasons ranging from missing files, fake seals and title deeds. How do files manage to walk out of registries yet they have no legs?" she wondered.

CRIME
Ms Karoney said her ministry is setting up a special legal team to identify the roles of the national and county governments on matters survey.

This is after Governor Ongwae said the departments of survey and valuation were not collaborating with his administration, hence jeopardising service delivery.

Ms Karoney said they are awaiting a gazette notice from the NLC on the cancelled titles for further action.

Outgoing County Police Commander Bernard Muli said 80 percent of the murder cases in the region are land related.

Widows, orphans and the elderly have been crying for justice after losing their land to fraudsters.

FRAUD

Land fraud syndicates usually collude with officers in the Judiciary, National Police Service and the Lands ministry, something the minister denounced.

"I do not understand how Government is unable to deal with fraud. We must deal with this menace," she said, and directed County Commissioner Godfrey Kigochi to abate the vice.

"This is not a request. You must sort out the land issues in this county to promote quality service delivery. Give special attention to land which also touches on the security issues here."

More importantly, land transactions in the county will be digitised to help reduce fraud cases.

Some of the senior public officers who have had their deeds cancelled include Kisii Senator Sam Ongeri. The land was reverted to the regional government.