Residents and local officials in Malindi Town, Kilifi County, are outraged by the land grab of sea riparian land and have promised to defend it at all means.
Land speculators have been interested in the land that was left over when the waters of the Indian Ocean receded, and shockingly, they have even managed to secure title rights for the riparian area.
Since the grabbers are now forcing access roads to the grabbed portions through people’s properties, other investors have also been impacted by the move.
Timothy Mwambogo stated that no one should claim to have a title deed on such pieces of land because the riparian land has been designated for amusement parks in projects being carried out by the Kilifi County government and the World Bank.
He continued by saying that investor harassment was scaring away potential investors, which resulted in job losses. He now wants the county government and the national government to step in.
The title deeds of the properties from Eden Rock to the Golf Course, according to him, were up to the high-water mark, and even if the sea receded, the parcels would still belong to the original owners. As a result, he claimed, there was no land along the coastline.
The former council member requested an explanation from the commissioner of lands, surveyors, and physical planning officers regarding how certain people were able to secure titles from land that had receded from the sea.
He questioned why people with fake titles had taken over land that was supposed to be used for recreational amenities.
According to him, the section between the Malindi Casino and the estuary of the Sabaki River is the most notorious.
“The government is sleeping on the job, and title deeds are not allowed to be issued to parcels of land on the high water mark, and people should not think that lands formed when the Ocean recedes are to be owned by anyone,” he continued.
Harry Kombe, a member of parliament for Magarini, criticized the Ministry of Lands for issuing title deeds on riparian territory, which is illegal.
In order for the administration to clarify the circumstances surrounding the unauthorized allocation of riparian properties to specific individuals, he added that he would bring up the issue on the floor of Parliament.
He claimed that several events in the Lands Ministry had led to injustices to the point that people may even sell their own land.
Now that the county and the national government have committed to building the recreational amenities along the Bunthuani to Sabaki estuary, Kombe claimed that certain business tycoons have started encroaching on private property to build access roads.
Investors should have faith that the County government would safeguard them, according to Kilifi County Executive Committee Member (CECM) for Lands, Physical Planning, Housing, and Urban Development Jane Maiki Kamto. She has stated that she will not permit land speculators to invade riparian territory.
“Those title deeds are illegal because they were issued without following due process, and riparian land belongs to the government,” she claimed.
The governor of Kilifi, Gideon Mung’aro, issued a warning to land speculators that their time was running out and instructed his officials to stop issuing building licenses along the Vasco Da Gama-Sabaki Estuary beach line.