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Investors Turn Deaf Ear On Lenku’s Stipulated Rules Governing Land Use

Governor Joseph Lenku’s ban on subdivision of land into ¼ acre plots in agricultural land for purposes of sale

Seated third from left, county land CEC member listens to farmers at Olentoko Primary School in Kajiado West on February 10. He cautioned them against rampant subdivision of agricultural land.

appears to have fallen on deaf ears.

Lenku in a move to regulate land use in the county stopped land buyers from acquiring the properties in agricultural areas and subdividing them for housing development.

But the warning, which also stated that such activities would not be approved by the county government, has not shown any impact as land buyers continue to do the opposite.

On Saturday, the county CEC member for land Hamilton Parseina toured Olentoko area of Ewuaso Oonkidong’i ward in Kajiado West and on his way was shocked that rampant subdivision of plots in to1/4 acres was going on.

Shockingly again is that KNU took pictures of fresh subdivision of land property on land neighbouring a senior county land surveyor’s house.

Lenku had warned that hundreds of people may find themselves with worthless titles to pieces of land in Kajiado over the advertisement of “fake” plots for sale in the county.

He had also indicated that the county will not be approving subdivision of any rural land into “uneconomical” pieces.

“Any hawking of quarter-acre pieces of land in the heart of Kajiado is fake and will not be tolerated and that is the official position of the Kajiado county government,” Lenku had said.

On Saturday Parseina saw fresh erection of posters by land developers in Oltinga, Ilnaroj and Saikeri areas indicating that sale of quarter acre plots for housing are on sale.

Another shocker met the Land CEC at Olentoko area when elders told him point-blank that poverty has forced the people to sell their property in small sizes because they cannot educate their children without money.

Some elders said most of them have even fallen victims of land fraudsters who propose “unbelievably high pay” for property only to end up stealing their land.

Paul ole Yesho told Parseina that most farmers in the area have 50 acres of land with titles and when buyers get there, some of the local people engage with them with hopes that they can sell half the pieces but on receiving payment, the buyers take away the titles for processing and never return the documents.

“We are also blaming our wives in this area for not standing against their husbands in sale of their matrimonial farms. They are cheated into allowing their husbands sell land because they are told the money would be used for buying cars. When they hear about cars, they just say yes,” said Yesho.

Josephat ole Tinkoi, another elder, appealed to the county government to seek for the people other sources of income generation because the local banks are threatening to sell properties of those who took loan from the institutions.

“Bank interest rates on loans are high and those who depended on livestock to repay their loans are now suffering immensely after losing their herds to drought,” said Tinkoi.

The meeting that united the local people and county government officials was organized by Olentoko youth Elite group led by Philip Parsintei and Peninah Ntakayai.

Parseina said the county government is not going to relent on its warning to land developers veering into agricultural land.

“In fact as we speak now, the county government has made it clear to the people of the county that no house building plans will be approved without passing through our process of justification,” said Parseina.

He warned people who are planning to buy land in agricultural areas to do due diligence before forking out their hard-earned money.

“We are not going to do any approvals for whatever kind of development in these areas as it is illegal,” added Parseina.

Lenku had in December, however, maintained that the county welcomes investors but that land demarcation plans should be respected.

“We want to make it clear that Kajiado is an investment-friendly county,” he explained. We have land for industries, housing, ranching and wildlife. It should strictly be used for what it was intended for. If you find yourself in area designated for wildlife, do not attempt to make it a human settlement,” Lenku had said.

He said that unscrupulous businessmen have colluded with crooked land officials to short-circuit the system.

“Stand warned that if you are trying to split land beyond what the county has zoned for, know that it is an exercise in futility. If you bribed your way to get, we shall right it,” said Lenku in December.

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