Lamu, KENYA: The county government of Lamu has said it does not recognize the recently launched controversial Manda settlement scheme by the National Lands Commission.
Lamu Governor Issa Timamy said they were yet to strike a consensus with the NLC on the matter and that as such they shall not recognize 4000 acre land.
Speaking on phone on Tuesday,Timamy the decision of the county government shall stand until the commission holds talks with the county leaders over the same.
Timamy said the constitution has assigned a huge mandate to the county governments when it came to implementation of land matters and that there was need for the NLC to fully consult them.
He said the county had already put in place a suitable plan of how squatters would be resettled on the Manda scheme before the commission interfered.
Timamy said the plan was not just to resettle squatters but also establish towns, trading centres,roads and industries on the land which the commission has so far declared a settlement scheme.
“Our plan was for every squatter at the Manda lands to get a quarter an acre of land so that we can resettle as many as we can before the NLC came in and declared that they would only resettle 375 people.What of the rest of the squatters?.We do not recognize what the NLC did,”said Timamy.
On Friday last week,the NLC obtained a court order permitting it to officially proceed and launch the Manda settlement scheme that has been a centre of controversy for quite some time with both the county government and the commission harboring different plans for the lands.
Swazuri however insisted that the Manda settlement scheme has been officially listed and that the commission shall only recognize the 375 individuals resettled on the scheme by the commission.
He said the remaining bit was for them to hold talks with the county government and the 375 individuals on the exact acreage that is to be allocated for each person.
“We are yet to reach an agreement on whether we shall do 4 or 6 acres per person but that is under discussion now,” said Swazuri.
This comes amid heated differences between Lamu governor Issa Timamy and Senator Abu Chiaba with each accusing the other of land grabbing.