Landowners to be paid Sh4bn - Daily Nation

Landowners to be paid Sh4bn

Monday June 8 2015

National Lands Commission chairman Muhammad Swazuri briefs residents of Skembo village in Mombasa on June 8, 2015. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA

NLC chairman Muhammad Swazuri briefs residents of Skembo village in Mombasa on June 8, 2015 on how to fill forms for compensation of their land. Mr Swazuri has barred developers from a public land in Nairobi's Eastleigh estate. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By GITONGA MARETE
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By DENNIS ODUNGA
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Mombasa residents who will be displaced by the standard gauge railway will be paid a total of Sh4.4 billion.

Those to benefit from the compensation are owners of land falling within an eight kilometre stretch starting from the port to Miritini.

Individuals who have built structures on their plots are set to be paid a total of Sh330 million, according to National Land Commission (NLC) Chairman Muhammad Swazuri.

But Dr Swazuri warned those with fake title deeds along the eight kilometre stretch that they will not be compensated.

“We know there are people who acquired title deeds through shady deals. Once we confirm that a title was acquired in this manner, we will not pay them.

“We want the land to be handed over to the contractor as soon as possible. For the time being as we proceed with the exercise, the contractor will begin work in areas where there are no people,” he said.

ENGAGED IN TUSSLE

The NLC boss spoke at Skembo and Hodi villages near the second container terminal where the railway line will begin, and where residents have been engaged in a tussle with the government over compensation.

“The government has money to pay genuine land owners and nobody will be asked to move out without compensation. We have come with an offer including that for fishermen and the fish landing sites,” he added.

Dr Swazuri earlier held talks with Jomvu MP Badi Twalib, Changamwe MP Omar Mwinyi, Mombasa County Lands and Housing executive Francis Thoya and Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) officials.

Also present were representatives of the SGR contractor — China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) Limited.

Mr Mwinyi said Changamwe leaders would ensure the residents were duly paid for their property and land taken for the project.

County Commissioner Nelson Marwa asked leaders not to incite residents, saying they had a responsibility to tell them the truth about government plans.

Separately, NLC’s vice chairperson Abigael Mbagaya-Mukolwe said the compulsory acquisition of the railway corridor was unstoppable.

“The SGR is going on. The law requires that we give fair and prompt compensation. We are determining legality of the titles to know who should be paid as work on the SGR continues” the commissioner said on Monday.

Ms Mbagaya-Mukolwe was accompanied by commissioners Silas Kinoti, Emma Njogu, Clement Lenashuru and Dr Rose Musyoka.

She spoke during a sitting at the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) auditorium, in Nairobi. The session was organised to address disputes arising from the planned compensation for residents of Embakasi Township in Nairobi.

“Leaders should always talk to wananchi in a transparent manner and desist from inciting them.

“The truth is that the government will never evict people from areas meant for development of infrastructure projects without compensation,” she said.