Residents of Maweni village in Mtwapa area, Kilifi County have protested the grabbing of their 57-acre piece of land at the Mtwapa Maweni Settlement Scheme.

The scheme was formed in 2007 after the community won a court case against a land grabber who had even demolished their houses.

The residents claim that the land was surveyed by the government in 2017 and 1,401 beneficiaries were enlisted but the title deeds were processed for other people who are not residents.

Led by Mr Kesi Kitsao Bembere who settled on the land in 1959, the residents now claim that corrupt ministry of land officials, the local national government administration and local politicians infiltrated the titling process to deny them their rightful ownership of the land.

“The plots are being given to people who are not from this area and we don’t know them. At my age I still don’t have a title deed,” he said.

Mrs Gladys Riziki who has resided on the land for more than 30 years said that she was in the initial committee that helped the surveyors adjudicate the land but a local politician dissolved the committee last year and appointed non locals to the new committee.

“The surveyors came in 2017 and we helped them carry out their work but we were shocked when title deeds were issued late last year without us being given allotment letters. All the title deeds were issued to people who are not locals here,” said Mrs Riziki.

She added that it is the non-local committee members who are behind the skewed allocation of their land.

The residents now want the titles to be revoked and the adjudication exercise to start anew so that they can benefit from the land.

Mr David Mwangi wondered why in the process, title deeds were issued before allotment letters.

“We are 1,401 residents and we were supposed to get a 50 by 100 plot each but the title deeds have been given to other people who do not belong here,” he said.

By Treeza Auma

Treeza Auma is a Digital Content Producer and founder of KTMN She is also Television journalist at Kenya News Agency and Leadership Accelerator at Women in News.

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