PUBLIC LAND

Ngong Road Forest, Nairobi National Park to be linked up

Government on Friday moved to reclaim illegally acquired parcels in the forest.

In Summary
  • Only lawfully degazetted land will be spared.
  • A state of the art fence is being designed and in a couple of months fencing of the forest will commence.
Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko with a map of the infrastructural support for the Green Zones II project at Miotoni, Ngong Road Forest, on June 19, 2020.
Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko with a map of the infrastructural support for the Green Zones II project at Miotoni, Ngong Road Forest, on June 19, 2020.
Image: MAUREEN KINYANJUI

Ngong Road Forest, once reclaimed by the national government, will be linked up to the Nairobi National Park.

Environment and Forestry CS Keriako Tobiko said an underpass will be built to create an expanded dispersal area for wildlife.

The government on Friday moved to reclaim all illegally acquired parcels of land in Ngong Road Forest.

"Except the areas that were lawfully degazetted, all the other parcels of this forest, whether people have titles or not, whether they have built structures for business or residential houses, will be reclaimed," he said.

Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko at Miotoni, Ngong Road Forest, on June 19, 2020.
Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko at Miotoni, Ngong Road Forest, on June 19, 2020.
Image: MAUREEN KINYANJUI

The CS was speaking in Ngong Road Forest Miotoni block, where he received infrastructural support for the Green Zones II project, as he launched the second takeover of forest land in Nairobi.

He also flagged off Sh155 million Africa Development Bank-funded off-road vehicles and received rangers' housing units from the China Road and Bridge Corporation at the block.

Tobiko intimated that a state of the art fence is being designed and fencing of the entire Ngong Road Forest will begin in a couple of months.

“A team led Principal Secretary Dr Chris Kiptoo is working in conjunction with Kenya Wildlife Service on the details,” he said.

Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko plants an Elgon Teak at Miotoni, Ngong Road Forest, on June 19, 2020.
Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko plants an Elgon Teak at Miotoni, Ngong Road Forest, on June 19, 2020.
Image: MAUREEN KINYANJUI
 

In 1932, when Ngong Road Forest was proclaimed, it was 7,231.6 acres. The forest now covers less than 1,000 acres due to land grabbing.

Tobiko warned grabbers to surrender their title deeds to the Kenya Forest Service before the government comes for them.

“We have entities that have no conscience. Some people think that they are very smart by acquiring public land, we are coming for them,” he said.

During this year’s World Environment Day, President Kenyatta directed Tobiko's ministry, the Nairobi Metropolitan Services and KFS to reclaim and conserve public land.

On June 10, 2020, the ministry and KFS embarked on the recovery of grabbed forest land in Nairobi, starting with City Park, where hundreds of acres dished out by the defunct Nairobi City County are to be repossessed.

City Park was 90 acres but is now 63 acres. The park has been placed under the management of KFS.

Edited by Josephine M. Mayuya