Just days after President Kenyatta distributed thousands of title deeds to the landless people at the Coast, some of the beneficiaries have sold their plots.
Land speculators have camped in Lamu and Mombasa scouting for sellers among the 15,000 villagers, who received the titles.
On Lamu Island, where over 2,000 titles were dished out, provincial administrators have reported a lot of activity in land transactions.
A chief in Lamu, who spoke to the Saturday Nation yesterday, confirmed that he had tracked up to six fresh land transactions involving the newly-issued titles in Boru and Bahamisi. The area residents
Sh10,000 What some Coast residents are selling their newly-acquired plots at issued titles in Boru and Bahamisi.
“I have identiﬁed six of my area residents who are already midway with their plans of selling oﬀ their pieces of land while majority are warming up to the idea. On further interrogation, the residents say they entirely blame the tough economic conditions, especially in Pate,” said the administrator.
The chief, however, plans to hold a meeting with the Lamu Lands Registrar on Monday to discuss how to control unnecessary sales.
In Manda Island, area assistant chief Mohammed Yusuf Suleiman has admitted that residents are selling oﬀ their land after recently acquiring deeds.
“I have so far recorded 66 transactions in
volving both local and foreigners buying land from the people here in Manda with some even going for as low as Sh10,000 an acre,” said Mr Suleiman.
He added: “I want to speciﬁcally plead with the headmen of the various areas in Manda to educate individuals on alternative means to beneﬁt from their land without actually selling it oﬀ.” Already, Lamu Governor Issa Timamy has warned over the speculative land buying targeting the new land owners and warned chiefs against encouraging residents to sell their plots.
Mr Timamy has cited DOs and chiefs in the area for being involved in the land deals, which he warned could lead to permanent landlessness in the area.
The governor was speaking during the swearing-in of four executive members of the Lamu county government and Public Service Board members at Mkunguni Square, Lamu Fort.
Yesterday, Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho said distribution of the remaining titles would continue in various parts today.
Mr Joho said the county officials in charge of land, county commissioner Nelson Marwa and Lands officials would visit Jomvu and Mwakirunge to ensure all the remaining title deeds are issued to the residents.
He reiterated that his county government would do everything to ensure the residents get their land. “Today we will be at Jomvu and Mwakirunge to ensure all the remaining title deeds are issued to the residents,“ the governor said.
In Taita Taveta County where many previously landless individuals also benefitted from the allocations, leaders have warned against hurried land sales.
Ms Assumpta Mwamburi, who works for a humanitarian organisation in the county, advised the locals not to sell their small pieces of land.