• The four-storey building in Kariobangi South ward belonging to Florence Gatari Njeru and Silas Jackson Njeru was demolished on March 22 last year.
• On May 2, 2019 Mowlem MCA Benson Mwangi petitioned the county assembly on behalf of the couple.
MCAs have ordered the county executive to compensate a couple whose Sh60 million property was demolished to set up a fire station.
The four-storey building in Kariobangi South ward belonging to Florence Gatari Njeru and Silas Jackson Njeru was demolished on March 22 last year.
Assembly Planning and Lands Committee handling a petition on the KCC village formalisation project on commercial plots no C61 and C66 found that couple complied with all regulations pertaining to land allocations by the City Council then.
On May 2, 2019 Mowlem MCA Benson Mwangi petitioned the county assembly on behalf of the couple.
The MCA sought intervention on the repossession by the county of their KCC village commercial plots.
The couple acquired the plots on January 7, 2002.
Through the then Nairobi City Council’s approval, they put up a permanent four storey building on plot C61 and established a hardware and a car wash business.
The petitioners appeared before the assembly Lands and Planning Committee on May 22 and June 4.
They told the committee that the demolition of the four-storey building and properties was done without any notice being extended to them by the county government.
The couple also lost vital documents in that process.
To their knowledge, from the time the Njerus were allocated the land to the date of demolition, the approved area development plans did not factor in a fire station.
The couple was also not consulted when there was a change of development plans to set up a fire station on their land.
In its findings, the committee led by chairman Anthony Kiragu found that both persons had paid all rates up to 2017.
County chief officer for lands Stephen Mwangi said the two plots were located on land that had been earmarked for the development of a horticultural produce wholesale market along Kangundo Road.
He further said that in 2010, the City Council of Nairobi nullified the allocation of all the plots due for the same.
“Regarding the request for compensation to the petitioners, it is noteworthy that there are over 300 allottees whose plots were nullified in 2010 to pave way for the market project,” Mwangi said.
The nullification was based on a council resolution in 2009 in a town planning committee, he said.
But Mwangi did not provide supporting evidence that the land was indeed earmarked for the establishment of a market.
The minutes provided to support the nullification of allotments were those of the general purpose committee and not the town planning committee as he had alleged in his oral submission.
As a result, the land and planning committee recommended that the Njerus be compensated by the county.
"In accordance with section 3 of the Land Act 2012 and based on the principles of fair administrative action contained in Article 47 of the Constitution, the county government institutes the process of compensating the petitioners for the loss of their lands plot C61 and C 66 and any development demolished there in," reads the report.
County chief executive for lands was also directed to formulate policies and procedures on allotment and revocation of county public land.
The laws would eliminate instances of subjective direction by offices in the sector and to provide uniformity when dealing with such matters.
"The said policies are to be tabled before the committee within six months of the adoption of the report," reads the report.
(edited by O. Owino)