Majengo Residents Protest Alleged Grabbing Of A Road Reserve By A Developer

Residents of Majengo Ropa in Mvita Sub-County want the National Land Commission (NLC) to resolve a 20-year land tussle involving a road reserve.

The residents are pointing an accusing finger at some county government officials for allowing the construction of a building on a road reserve to proceed despite a cancellation of the same during the reign of Governor Hassan Joho.

Construction of the building, the residents lamented, would block access to emergency services, children’s playing ground and force closure of businesses.

‘As we were growing up this was a road, we used to play now there is a project we are being told it’s a private property whilst we know it’s a road. We are seeing road reserves being grabbed and people constructing houses,’ says Muhsin Swaleh, a resident of Majengo Ropa.

If the construction is allowed to continue Swaleh says it will affect many people and called for the intervention of the National Government as they have no trust in County Land officials.

‘We want justice to be done. It is still a puzzle as to why the County Government gave approval while they know this is a road,’ demands Swaleh adding that when the developer is stopped by County Officials, they receive a call from above, and after a few days’ construction resumes again.

Jamil Faraj a resident says the developer hoodwinked the residents that he wanted to build a social amenity but later changed to residential apartments after a few months.

‘The building lacks permits, we used to play football here, the developer came and disguised himself to buy the land to build a madrassa and tuition for the residents’ benefit but he had a hidden agenda,’ he said adding that the developer worked in cahoots with some elders.

Jamal a disabled laments that residents will lack an alternative route to their homes in case of emergency and the developer seems influential because his plan was canceled during Governor Joho’s tenure.

The residents are accusing the County Land Office of exacerbating the land problem because they are custodians of all land maps yet they went ahead to give a permit for development of a road reserve.

Kennedy Okinyi a fish trader in the area said the road facilitates the movement of goods and people and if it’s allowed to be grabbed businesses will close shop.

Source: Kenya News Agency