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January 21, 2019

Joho's team demolishes walls around grabbed Mama Ngina Drive land

A Mombasa county bulldozer pulls down a wall at Mama Ngina Drive on Friday, January 11, 2019. /BRIAN OTIENO
A Mombasa county bulldozer pulls down a wall at Mama Ngina Drive on Friday, January 11, 2019. /BRIAN OTIENO

The Mombasa county government has demolished perimeter walls surrounding the 2.5 acres of land at the Mama Ngina Drive.

The move follows President Uhuru Kenyatta's directive on Monday that all public land grabbed in Mombasa be repossessed within five months.

A bulldozer on Friday afternoon flattened a wall surrounding 1.5 acres of land near the entrance to the Likoni Ferry channel.

Another wall surrounding a one-acre parcel near the Mombasa Golf Course was also brought down.

Mombasa county Lands executive Edward Nyale supervised the exercise.

The exercise, unlike others in the county, received overwhelming public support.

Traders had earlier in the day met with Nyale and other county officials to discuss how they will be accommodated after the exercise.

Residents took advantage of the demolition and made away with scrap metal.

Nyale said the county was the original complainant over the grabbing of the Mama Ngina Drive land.

"We are happy because of the swift response we have received from the National Land Commission," Nyale said.

NLC chairman Muhammad Swazuri toured the controversial piece of land on Thursday.

Read: Most of Mama Ngina Drive land set for Sh460m upgrade grabbed - Swazuri

Swazuri said out of 26 acres that comprise the whole of the Mama Ngina Drive, 20 had been grabbed.

Nyale said the grabbers were afraid to develop it.

"Though 20 acres have been taken, only two parcels have walls erected around them. And there is nothing built on the land," Nyale said.

He said that the land was grabbed in the late 1980s.

The Lands executive commended wananchi for supporting the exercise.

"All this is in keeping with what we have been saying that all public land be reverted to the public," Nyale said.

He said Mama Ngina Drive was only the start and the county will move to other parts where public land has been grabbed.

Nyale said the Drive had been given priority because the county wants the regeneration project not to be interfered with.

Read also: Mama Ngina Drive land thieves to be exposed next week – NLC

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