Politics and policy
Lobby faults move to issue Coast residents with title deeds
Posted Tuesday, September 17 2013 at 21:13
An institute involved in land matters has criticised the recent issuance of title deeds to some Coast residents for contravening parts of the Constitution.
The Land Development and Governance Institute (LDGI) said the Ministry of Lands should have consulted with the National Land Commission (NLC) on the allocations.
The institute said the two agencies that have had an uneasy relationship are charged with a responsibility of ensuring the law is followed.
“There is a need for the two parties to work together, failure to do so, we shall continue witnessing the conflict that is already there,” said Mr Ibrahim Mwathane, the chairman of LDGI.
He said that the misunderstanding over the respective roles of the Lands Cabinet Secretary and the NLC, which is an independent agency, was likely to jeopardise service delivery.
According to Mr Mwathane, the Land Act 2012 gives NLC powers to advise the national government on comprehensive programme for the registration of titles to land.
“This means that the land commission is charged with advisory and supervisory roles with respect to land registration, and they should be involved in any exercise that involves land transactions in the country,” he says.
Section 6 of the Land Act 2012 gives the minister the role of developing policies on land, upon the recommendation of the commission, facilitating the implementation of land policy and reforms and monitoring and evaluating land sector performance.
“You will realise that the two have to work together and there is no way that one party can be left out,” said Mr Mwathane during the 12th score card report on assessment of the performance of the of the Environment and Land Court.
This comes just a few days after President Uhuru Kenyatta issued more than 60,000 title deeds to squatters in Mombasa County.
NLC later claimed it was not involved in the exercise with Lands secretary Charity Ngilu warning NLC chairman Mohamed Swazuri against undermining the State. The President intervened and asked the two to work together.
On Monday, Institution of Surveyors of Kenya chairman Collins Kowuor said the move to issue titles without involving stakeholders could undermine the sanctity of the document.