Elders seek presidential intervention in land dispute
A group of elderly men and women from Kamwangi, Gatundu North are now appealing for the intervention of President Uhuru Kenyatta in a land dispute that has remained unresolved for 30 years.
New Kamwangi Gumba Company limited members who are the original owners of 0.5 acreage piece of land where Kamwangi police station is located claim that they bought the piece of land in 1958 before Kiambu Coffee Growers Co-operative Union management where they were working used the “back door” to obtain a “fake” title deed.
Speaking during a meeting in Kamwangi CDF hall, the 130 members vowed not to relent until justice was served.
“We bought this land while working with Kiambu Coffee Growers Co-operative Union in early 1950’s through shares. After we left the company the management sought to grab the land using unfair means. We have the original title deed which, even the first President Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, was aware of,” said Joyce Wambui.
According to their chairman James Mukiri, the area CDF in 2013 pleaded with them to have a temporary police station built on their land on condition that the CDF will be paying tenancy fees to the company on a quarterly basis.
They claimed that the land ownership dispute had blocked Gatundu North CDF tenancy payment saying the arrears had risen to Sh1.6 million.
The nonpayment’s by CDF came about after Kiambu Coffee Growers Corperative Union started demanding the payments claiming that the land belonged to them.
“The conflict escalated in 2015 when Gatundu North CDF management failed to liquidate tenancy arrears and have since then held rental payment. We are asking President Kenyatta, to intervene. We have sought resolution through attorney general’s office, National Lands Commission and our leaders here in futility,” noted Lucy Gakiri, a member
The elderly persons threatened to demolish Kamwangi police station structures if the CDF will not remit the arrears and Kiambu Coffee Growers Corporative Union relinquish claim to the land ownership.
“Uhuru must act on our grievances lest we demolish Kamwangi police station structures to repossess our land. Gatundu North MP Francis Kigo must also authorize our delayed payments. We toiled for the property and justice must be served before we die; we don’t want our grandchildren, who are beneficiaries of our hard work to suffer like us in seeking justice,” pleaded Kamau Kimani, a member.
By Joseph Ng’ang’a