Two arrested in Nairobi over land grabbing as Sonko warns corrupt county officials

Part of the South C perimeter wall being demolished./COURTESY

Nairobi, KENYA: Two people have been arrested in Nairobi’s South C estate in a land grabbing saga involving a private developer and county officials.

The two were arrested on Saturday evening when City Hall officials led by acting County Secretary Pauline Waititu, Roads and Transport CEC Muhamed Dagane among others presided over the demolition of a perimeter wall erected on a grabbed piece of land in South C estate.

The two, Joshua Irungu who is said to be the son of the private developer and Naftali Muchangi, a caretaker of the land will be arraigned in court on Monday to face charges.

The perimeter wall had been demolished last year in an exercise led by Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko, but the private developer is said to have illegally acquired approval letters from City Hall for reconstruction.

Sonko has now warned county officials involved in the South C land grabbing saga saying they’ll face disciplinary action if found guilty of aiding the private developer to illegally acquire construction approval documents from the county government.

“We had already confirmed that the private developer had grabbed the land and also encroached on a road reserve during the first demolition exercise that I officiated over a few months ago. I’m now shocked that the same person has gone ahead and acquired approvals from City Hall to reconstruct the perimeter wall,” he said.

South C Ward MCA Osman Khalif and South C Residents Association Chair Ranjana Bharaj who were part of the delegation during the demolition exercise welcomed the move by the Nairobi County Government to demolish the perimeter wall.

“We appreciate the move by Sonko’s administration to demolish the perimeter wall which had encroached on public land which was meant to be a playground in the area,” said Bharaj.