, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 9 – Amani coalition Presidential candidate Musalia Mudavadi has called for honesty in handling national and sensitive issues by leaders.
Speaking while campaigning in Garsen in Tana River County, Mudavadi told residents not to take seriously pronouncements that a president has power to solve the land issues in Lamu.
He said the Constitution was clear on how matters of restitution and compensation on matters of historical injustices including land should be handled and he will ensure he follows the constitution to resolve land issues.
The DPM cautioned voters not to elect leaders without questioning their integrity.
“I was here last year and you were complaining of title deeds which were promised to you by one of my competitors. You even rioted. He was here today making the same promises and I hope you’ve learnt a lesson,” said Mudavadi who was accompanied by his running mate Jeremiah Kioni.
Mudavadi reiterated that it is County Governments through County Land Commissions that are mandated and will resolve the land question in many parts of Kenya.
“You know I am the champion of devolution. Vote for me to ensure that county governments are up and running in April so that these commissions can begin addressing land matters”, he appealed.
Last year, Lamu residence demonstrated and threatened to scuttle the launching of the Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia Transport corridor (LAPSSET) project unless titles were given and their stake in the project spelt out.
Mudavadi said an Amani government will fast-track the LAPSSET project in Lamu as it held immense commercial and employment benefits to the coast region.
On complaints by locals that land speculators have been illegally allocated prime chunks around the LAPSSET project area and are set to make a kill at the expense of original indigenous owners, he conceded that Lamu has become a “wild Eldorado”.
He said it was only fair that local community be given priority in title deeds and government compensates Lamu County for donating public land for the project.
“When elected, Amani will promote local coastal investors shareholding and by Coast County governments. This project is big enough for all of us because it requires more funding. There is room in LAPSSET for local people and County Governments to invest through preferential allocated shares on a pro rata bases, he promised.
Kioni said land was the most important economic resource to our country and should not be used to impoverish Kenyans.
“Land must be managed for the benefit of all Kenyans without using it as a political tool to punish anybody,” he added.