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300 families move to withdraw from Malindi Airport land eviction case

THE MALINDI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT. FILE PHOTO | NMG
THE MALINDI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

About 300 families in Kwachocha have moved to court to withdraw orders stopping the eviction and compensation process for the Sh5.6 billion expansion of Malindi International airport.

They claimed that they are not part of Mtangani Development group that obtained orders last month stopping land surveying and property valuation on the airport expansion lands.

Last month, Justice James Olola issued orders restraining the Kenya Airport Authority, the National Lands Commission (NLC), the Attorney General and Police from forcefully evicting the residents.

This comes seven months after the government disbursed Sh300 million for compensation to the National Land Commission (NLC), with the land survey and property evaluation ongoing.

However, 300 families in Kwachocha have now urged the government through the NLC to speed up the compensation to enable them begin new life in a different land.

Mr Ibrahim Ndaa, a resident of Kwachocha said they are withdrawing from the case following a consensus between them and Mtangani CBO representatives at the Deputy County Commissioner's office.

“It was done through consent from both parties with consultation from the Assistant County Commissioner and lawyer Stephen Obaga for the Matangani residents and they agreed to exclude us,” he added.

Addressing journalists at Kwachocha after the meeting the residents asked President Uhuru Kenyatta to intervene and hasten the compensation process.

Mrs Wahida Duncan, a village elder, said there are two groups in the compensation plan and Kwachocha residents are ready to move out of the land earmarked for the expansion once they are compensated.

In the resolution to withdraw Kwachocha residents from the case, the DCC directed the three representatives of Mtangani CBO to avail themselves at the lawyer’s office on June 19 to execute it.

Mtangani residents had moved to court through a CBO demanding the suspension of the airport expansion project saying that several land ownership cases on airport expansion lands were pending in court.

The CBO also claimed that the airport expansion project will result to demolition of 4,000 permanent and 2, 220 semi-permanent houses bringing them a huge loss.

Late last year, the government disbursed Sh300 million to NLC for compensating residents living in the lands for Sh5.6 billion Malindi International airport expansion project.

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