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PUBLIC BEACHES

Sh800 million to reclaim grabbed landing sites

PS says government is developing six landing sites at the Coast

In Summary

• State released Sh300 million this year and next year will release another Sh500 million for reclamation and public beaches.  

• Ntiba said tenders for the development of the six landing sites at the Coast have already been awarded. 

Fisheries PS Micheni Ntiba at the Jomo Kenyatta Public Beach in Mombasa on Saturday.
RECLAIMING GRABBED LAND: Fisheries PS Micheni Ntiba at the Jomo Kenyatta Public Beach in Mombasa on Saturday.
Image: BRIAN OTIENO

The government is in the final stages of repossessing grabbed landing sites at the Coast.

Fisheries PS Micheni Ntiba said on Saturday that it has released Sh300 million for this year and will next year release another Sh500 million next year.  

Ntiba said the government is already developing six landing sites. 

In November last year, President Uhuru Kenyatta issued a directive on reclamation while launching the Kenya Coast Guard Service at Liwatoni, Mombasa.

Speaking during World Oceans Day the Jomo Kenyatta Public Beach, Ntiba said the Sh300 million will be used for the surveying and putting beacons at the landing sites.

“Dealing with all the landing sites in Kenya is expensive.  We are at the final stage of recovering them. Since Uhuru's directive we have been working day and night,” Ntiba said.

He said the government has since been locating, mapping and sorting out the disputes involving the landing sites. 

The celebrations took place just 50 metres from a grabbed landing site claimed by fishermen.

Wavuvi Association of Kenya chairman Hamid Mohamed said the landing site was grabbed by a private developer who is putting up a hotel.

“The landing site at this public beach has been grabbed and we stopped it through the court,” said Mohamed, who is also a board member of the Fish Marketing Authority, said.

He welcomed Ntiba’s commitment to repossess all the grabbed landing sites but said the process is painstakingly slow.

“I want to believe in his words and I am sure he will deliver. However, the process is too slow and this is affecting fishermen’s lives,” Mohamed said.

At the moment, the National Land Commission has been incapacitated as it has no substantive chairman after the term of Muhamad Swazuri ended.

Acting chair Abigael Mbagaya cannot make certain key decisions in the acting role.

Ntiba said tenders for the development of the six landing sites have already been awarded.

He said six other landing sites at Lake Victoria in Nyanza and Western regions are also being developed.

“We want to recover and develop all of them. Landing sites are important. They are like border posts. We need to protect them as such,” the PS said.

He said they will gazette other landing sites if need be. 

(Edited by R.Wamochie)