Swazuri welcomes Supreme Court ruling


National Land Commission (NLC) chairperson Muhamad Swazuri has welcomed the Supreme Court ruling clarifying its mandate and that of the Ministry.

In March last year, the commission sought the court’s interpretation on roles played by the two state entities following protracted supremacy wrangles causing disorder in service delivery.

Mr Swazuri who spoke in Nakuru on Tuesday said the ruling was a win to both the commission and the Ministry as both were apportioned specific powers over the management of land.

“Renewal and extension of leases which was a contentious issue is now a mandate of the NLC,” clarified Mr Swazuri who was in Nakuru to train land administration officers from all the 47 counties on their role in effective land management.

Mr Swazuri however decried the commission’s underfunding cripples its process of solving disputes related to settlement schemes.

He said the commission lacks Sh4 billion required to settle squatters and address related concerns.

In 2014/15, the commission had requested for Sh8billion from the Treasury but received Sh2 billion. In the current Financial Year, it was allocated Sh1.8 billion out of the Sh7.2 billion it needed to ensure effective implementation of their core functions.

“We have massive requests from all places including Uasin Gishu, Trans Nzoia, Turkana, Kilifi, Kwale, Kajiado and Narok but we do not have funding,” he said.

He said the commission could seek donor funding since they are allowed to source for funds from external development partners.

He expressed optimism of winning the donors’ trust following renewed cooperation with the Ministry of Lands.

Previously, Mr Swazuri said development partners were skeptical of financing their requests due to the supremacy wrangles witnessed between the two state land authorities.

Already, NLC has secured $28,000 for developing a digitised land management database aimed at enhancing transparency in the delivery of the land services.