Lamu residents have vehemently opposed the county government plan to give each family a quarter acre piece of land at the Swahili settlement scheme in Hindi, Lamu West Constituency.
The locals said Lamu county government want to benefit unknown and non-residents with the 16,000 acre piece of land, leaving indigenous with completely nothing.
Speaking at Roka area in Hindi, Human rights lobby Haki Africa Lamu County Coordinator Yunus Isaack Ahmed said the quarter acreage per family will not be accepted.
Mr. Ahmed urged Lamu governor Fahim Twaha to openly declare whose interests he is serving.
“As Lamu locals we want to know whose interests our governor is serving. Is he serving Lamu people or few rich individuals?” noted Mr. Ahmed.
The Swahili settlement scheme is at the centre of conflict as it borders the Lamu port.
“Initially, residents were to be given 4 acres each, however the process secretly changed to a quarter acreage each family,” revealed the human rights defender.
During the recent Roka meeting, locals unanimously opposed to the quarter acre plan and insisted on the 4 acre initial plan.
“We will be forced to mobilise our people and institute a legal battle, Lamu residents no longer entertainment such gross human rights violations,” revealed an embittered Ahmed.
He cautioned that if the Lamu county assembly will also be compromised at the expense of Lamu people then the only option will be legal action.
Ahmed termed the whole situation as shameful since the Lamu government which is meant to safeguard the interests of its people is actually striving to economically ‘kill’ locals.
He said the land if properly subdivided at four acres each family it will absorb approximately 8,000 families.
“However, Lamu County government wants over 20 thousand families to fit in the same piece of land as the other chunk is handed over to unknown rich individuals. We will not tolerate or accept such inhuman acts,” he said.
The Swahili settlement scheme battle is just getting started with locals strongly opposing any attempts to issue them with a 1/4 acre of land for each family.