Over 3,000 residents lay claim of ownership of land Mama Ngina Kenyatta is fighting for in Taita Taveta County.
About 3,000 residents of the Jipe area in Taveta Constituency, Taita Taveta County want Mama Ngina Kenyatta to attest that she has given up the 1,062.3 hectares of land she just sued the government for.
Speaking to the media on Friday, the locals said that Mama Ngina and former Taveta MP Basil Criticos had made a mistake in their lawsuit against the government demanding the property title deed of the land in Taita Taveta County.
The two claimed to be the land’s joint proprietors.
The locals expressed regret that they would be forced to leave the property following the lawsuit filed against the state by Mama Ngina.
“I have the evidence here, this land was given by Mama Ngina Kenyatta herself and Basil Criticos on March 18, 1997. Both have their signatures here,” an area resident who claimed to be the spokesperson stated.
He further claimed that the former first lady asked for the land to be subdivided among the residents.
“Those who have started going to court including our elder sister Mama Ngina Kenyatta and our brother Basil Criticos are making us fearful,” another resident complained.
Albert Kanzoi, one of the first residents to occupy the Jipe area urged those involved in the matter to seek guidance from elders. He also urged the government to provide them with title deeds to protect them from any possible eviction.
“Among those of us who came to this area from Tanganyika, only two are remaining. All these other people who you see in this area have been born here,” Kanzoi stated.
Area MP John Okano Bwire further called on the government to address the squatters’ grievances and officially distribute the piece of land to them.
“As an MP of this area, and as a lawyer, I need this information to reach the President. This land was surrendered by the former first lady and Basil as indicated by the evidence we have. Let him divide this land amongst the residents,” the MP stated but did not divulge whether they would be enjoined in the suit.
This comes after Mama Ngina and Basil Criticos moved to court in December last year seeking ownership of the 1062.3 hectares of land.
In the case, Mama Ngina and Criticos sued the Chief Lands Registrar and the Attorney General for allegedly failing to issue them with the title for the land.