– Environment CS Keriako Tobiko says probe into Mau Forest encroachment is complete
– He said DCI boss Kinoti has handed over case files to DPP Haji for review and prosecution
– Tobiko maintained title deeds owned by Mau Forest locals were acquired illegally
– He said the evictions will continue as early planned and nobody will be compensated
There is a looming wave of arrests for all senior government officials, politicians and ranch owners who sold off Mau Forest land to innocent Kenyans.
Environment Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko disclosed that Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI) George Kinoti has completed probe into over 14,000 hectares of land in Mau that were encroached by well-connected individuals.
Appearing before National Assembly’s Environment Committee on Tuesday, September 10, Tobiko said Kinoti has already handed over the case files to Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji.
Tobiko described those involved in the encroachment as “big fish”, stating that they were the same people behind the push to compensate the affected families.
“Criminal investigations have been done by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations. The files relating to these criminalities are now with the Director of Public Prosecutions who will soon make a decision,” said Tobiko.
According to documents presented before the committee which is led by Maara MP Kareke Mbiuki, the big fish sold the land to other 7,000 individuals despite the fact that they were acquired illegally.
“The ballooning into the forest would not have occurred without participation of ranch and Government officials. The fact that the documents were signed by Government officials does not make an illegal document legal.”Loading...
During Tobiko’s presentation, thing got out of control when the tough speaking CS said title deeds held by 716 individuals were “mere pieces of papers” and no compensation will be provided for them.
Agitated by the comment MPs Hillary Koskei (Kipkelion West) and Charity Kathambi (Njoro,) banged tables and shouted down the CS terming his remarks as an insult to the affected families.
Koskei even hurled insults as he said Tobiko had no powers to declare that a government-issued document was null and void, before demanding that due process be followed.
“These helpless families can only be evicted through a legal process. We want a plan which is consistent and fair. When a government wants to declare a title invalid, it needs to go to the High Court. This is the only path to invalidating a title deed,” he said.
However, Tobiko maintained that nearly over 6,000 individuals targeted for eviction must leave the water tower because they acquired the parcels illegally.
“These are illegal transactions between private individuals and are of no legal or constitutional validity. Compensation whether in form of monetary compensation or provision of alternative land is not a matter of right of entitlement because compensation presupposes validity of title,” he told the committee
Do you have a groundbreaking story you would like us to publish? Please reach us through firstname.lastname@example.org or WhatsApp: 0732482690. Contact Tuko.co.ke instantly