Umoja residents cry foul after their houses, businesses were demolished over land dispute

By , K24 Digital
On Sat, 10 Jul, 2021 12:17 | 2 mins read
Residents cry foul as their houses and business are demolished. PHOTO: Courtesy

Several residents of Umoja area in Embakasi West Constituency, Nairobi County, were forced to spend the night in the cold after their houses were demolished.

According to residents, the operation was led by police officers, National Metropolitan Service 9NMS) officials and members of Kiambu-Dandora Limited Company who have claimed ownership of the land in question.

The group stormed the area in the wee hours of Saturday morning leaving residents homeless and their properties destroyed.

Residents who opposed the demolition took to the streets to protest saying they were not given notice.

Several shop owner lost their properties to thieves as a result of the demolition.

"They started demolishing around 3 am. No notice was given to us. We have lost several properties from our business premises," one of the residents said

 The 818 acres of land is occupied by several estates including Umoja, Nasra, Umoja 3 and Sossian

According to area MP George Theuri, the ownership of the land is controversial since many area residents have title deeds just like those claiming ownership of the land.

“Nobody knows who is the legitimate landowner because both parties have a title deed. We have tried to address the issue in parliament but we have not gotten a clear path,” the MP said.

Theuri condemned the early demolition saying it is against human rights as enshrined in the Kenyan constitution.

The MP also expressed doubt on the legitimacy of the demolition exercise since police officers in charge of the demolition came from a different area of jurisdiction.

“What you are seeing here is impunity. The demolition is being done under the supervision of police officers. What we want to know is this demolition being done based on a court order?” he posed.

“Police have been brutal throughout this operation. The OCPD who is supervising this operation is from Kayole yet our area OCPD is not even aware of what is happening,” he claimed.

The land conflict is said to have taken 30 years.