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Want a piece of IDP land? That’ll be $866 only

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The government will spend Sh1.4 billion to buy land and another Sh432 million to compensate integrated IDPs s in Nyanza, Western and Central provinces. Photo/FILE

The government will spend Sh1.4 billion to buy land and another Sh432 million to compensate integrated IDPs s in Nyanza, Western and Central provinces. Photo/FILE 

By PHILIP NGUNJIRI

Posted  Monday, December 28   2009 at  00:00
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Corrupt officials at Kenya’s Rift Valley provincial land adjudication and resettlement office, working with rich crooks, are selling land bought by the government to resettle internally displaced people to the highest bidder, The EastAfrican can reveal.

With between Ksh65, 000 ($866) and Ksh90,000 ($1,200), and the right connection, one is legally acquiring a 2.2 hectares (five acres) piece of land within minutes.

But the price is rising daily as greedy people rush to acquire the “precious commodity” whose current market value ranges between Ksh150,000 ($2000) to Ksh200,000 ($2666), depending on the locality.

Haphazard and incoherent

This is coming at a time when the government is being accused by various organisations and foreign governments of executing a haphazard and incoherent resettlement programme.

Meanwhile, thousands of IDPs will continue to languish in various camps in the expansive Rift Valley Province this month.

More than 3,000 families, previously IDPs at Mawingo in Nyandarua and now settled on Gicheha farm (formerly associated with the Kenyatta family), about 25 kilometres, east of Nakuru town, have started to grumble.

They are accusing the government of taking too long to allocate them two acres of land as promised.

Many victims of the poll chaos pooled the Ksh10,000 ($133) paid to each family and bought a 60-acre farm.

The EastAfrican has seen documents that include an official government receipt of Ksh13,375 and an allotment letter of a 2.2 hectares of land in the expansive Gicheha farm in Rongai.

The allotment letter is on a government letterhead and is fully signed and stamped by the provincial land adjudication and resettlement officer. It is copied to the Nakuru district land registrar.

An official at the ministry of land — who did not want to be quoted since he is not authorised to speak to the media — could neither confirm nor deny the matter.

“Here is a situation where some greedy Kenyans are losing their money. I doubt ministry officials are involved,” he said.

The resettlement has been met with scepticisms by local people.

Rongai Member of Parliament Luka Kigen says the resettlement is a PNU ploy to boost the party’s numbers in Parliament after the 2012 elections.

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