By Johnson Chengo
A section of Chamari village residents in Magarini Constituency, Kilifi County wants the national government to give them back their land they claimed owned by the Agricultural Development Corporation.
The residents led by Jacob Kokani also insisted the boundaries between them and ADC be put open and title deeds issued to them to end the long land tussle.
Speaking to journalists at Chamari village, Kokani one of the residents said ADC encroached on community land by extending the boundaries of the Galana and Kulalu ranches through four locations hence annexing thousands of hectares of community land and displacing the residents.
“As a community, we are asking the government to come on the ground and settle the boundaries between us and the ADC and then issue us with title deeds. We expected to be allocated the land when the Corporation collapsed but we were horrified to learn it was allocated to tycoons and other influential people in government,” he said.
The four locations include Kisiki cha Mzungu in Chakama, Adu, Bungale and Chamari.
He faulted the national Parliamentary land committee for doing nothing despite promising to solve the matter.
“The parliamentary land committee made several visits to hear our cries and promises to settle the matter since 2006 but what we have been seeing is different. Over 4000 acres had been allocated to powerful people in government and companies,” said Kokani.
Kokani said that the ADC land formerly belongs to the locals but it was taken by the government for agricultural projects which later failed.
Christine Chopa Diva a resident of Bungale, said despite petitioning their report to the County assembly to have the matter implemented and settled nothing has been done.
“In the report, we asked the assembly to intervene and push the county government to liaise with the national government to implement the report on petition number 004 of the national assembly’s committee on land but as we understand that justice delayed is justice denied. It’s already one year since the matter should have been resolved,” she said.
Institute of Participatory Development Director Mzungu Ngoma has called on government agencies to adhere to the laws governing lands so that the residents get justice.
He said his organization will continue giving awareness to the residents affected on possible of solving the matter.
Joseph Pekeshe another resident said they had lived on the land before ADC come in.
He also called on Senate Speaker Amason Kingi to intervene in the matter so that the locals get justice.
“We are asking Kingi to be on the front line in fighting our land, he is also one of the people affected but he is of a calibre to sort out this matter,” he said.