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The Nairobi County Government has confirmed that the disputed land in Westlands where a house was demolished by a gang belongs to University of Nairobi lecturer Nazmudin Kurji.

At the same time, the regional government has written to the National Land Commission (NLC), asking for information on the number of leases it has renewed.

This comes after investigations by the county were completed.

Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero condemned the destruction of the property as the county government distanced itself from it.

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Dr Kidero said the owner bought the land on September 10, 1987, and has been paying rates to the county, with the recent payment of Sh31,950 made on March 31, 2016.

He said although the lease had expired since it was given in 1904, no other party had applied for it, hence the reason to ask the NLC for a list of renewals.

“We were not aware the lease had been renewed on someone else’s name. We saw an advertisement by the NLC purporting to invite individuals claiming ownership of the land, reference number 1870/1/337 and 1870/1/338 — located on Jalaram Road, to produce evidence that they are the owners,” said Dr Kidero.

STOP ILLEGAL DEVELOPMENT

He said documentation released on November 10 saying the Nairobi County issued a notice to stop any further “illegal development forthwith and remove any illegal structures” was false. He added that it was forged.

The governor said claims that the order had been issued under notice number 5500 and signed by Mr J. Oduor were forged. He said the individual who signed it does not work at City Hall and his government was not aware of any enforcement letter issued.

He added that the allegation on the notice that the building was new and illegal was untrue as the house has been in existence for a long time.

The governor also took issue with the NLC for “overstepping its mandate”, saying it should consult with City Hall on land issues.

He said the county had renewed only two land leases since 2013 and to the original owners, and was not aware if NLC had been renewing leases.

Dr Kidero said some criminal cartels have been forging letters and grabbing public land with impunity.

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