Land petition against Delmonte withdrawn

Murang'a county government offices in Murang'a town.
Murang'a county government offices in Murang'a town.

Kandara residents have withdrawn a petition in which they wanted Delmonte Company’s land lease renewal stopped until public participation is conducted. The residents on Wednesday told the Environment and Land court they have opted for an out-of-court settlement.

The suit sought to bar the National Land Commission and the county governments of Murang’a and Kiambu from commencing the land lease renewal process. But the residents’ lawyer Duncan Okatch told Justice Grace Kemei they have agreed to embark on negotiations with the other parties. The lawyer told the court the negotiations will involve the attorney general, NLC and both county governments and that a report will be presented before the court in a period of one month.

The residents filed the petition early this year seeking to be involved in the lease renewal process. They also wanted the court to compel the company to cede 6,500 acres of land that they claimed were “violently seized” by colonialists from their forefathers and later owned by the company.