NLC to conduct countrywide inspection of grabbed airport lands

NLC chair Mohammed Swazuri speaking in Ukunda , Kwale regarding the grabbed airport lands. PHOTO: SITA LAWRENCE.

Kwale, KENYA: Most of the Kenyan airport land has been grabbed with majority of the culprits being developers and squatters, this is according National Land Commission (NLC ).

NLC chair Dr. Mohammed Swazuri said that the commission has received complaints from Kenya Airport Authorities (KAA) that most of their land had been grabbed.

“We received complaints that the KAA lands have been grabbed and that the authority is facing hostility or resistance from those who have encroached,” he said.

Swazuri mentioned Moi International Airport in Mombasa County, Ukunda Airstrip in Kwale County, Malindi Airstrip in Kilifi County and Manda Airstrip in Lamu County; being some of the affected areas.

Some parts of  Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Wilson Airport, Isiolo Airport, Eldoret Airport and Kisumu Airport lands have also been reported to have been grabbed.

Speaking over the weekend in Ukunda, Dr. Swazuri said they have set 30 working days to go round the airports and inspect the claims.

About 25 families are said to have illegally encroached the Ukunda airstrip making it difficult for expansion.

“This airstrip has plans to expand but since those squatters have encroached the land the expansion cannot go on,” he said.

He noted that some of them have title deeds which are illegal since the airstrip was allocated 100 acres during the subdivision of Diani Settlement scheme.

“The titles some of them claim to hold were revoked because they came after Diani settlement scheme was subdivided,” he said.

He said the squatters sitting on KAA land illegally will not be compensated.

He however expressed the intention of KAA to acquire more land from adjacent families around Ukunda Airstrip; who will be compensated upon agreement.