NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 15 – More than one thousand squatters from Kamiti forest have filed an application seeking to commit to civil jail the National Land Commission (NLC) Chairman Muhammad Swazuri for disobeying a court order.
The squatters who thronged the Milimani Law Courts on Friday said there was attempt to serve Macharia Kinyanjui who is the Chairman of Kamiti Anmer Developers with a court order to stop him from commencing construction.
They squatters wanted Swazuri and Kinyanjui punished for ignoring the order that was protecting them from eviction.
The squatters through their Chairman Peter Wakaba said they obtained an order halting NLC from awarding a private developer the land, but same had been disobeyed.
They further wanted action to be taken against Kiambu County Commander for failing to enforce the order issued on December 8, 2015 and extended to September 5, 2016.
They accused Kamiti Anmer Development Association of invading and demolishing over two hundred houses belonging to them.
They claimed that demolition was carried out on the night of September 13 and 14 defying the court order.
“The demolition by hired squad was unfortunately overseen and protected by the police who should ensure the court is obeyed.”
The squatters wanted those involved in defiance of the order punished and jailed for a period of six months.
Their contention was that they should be enjoying court protection following the issuance of the court order.
“Open defiance of the authority court will send the wrong message that where private citizen have a dispute they need not to wait for the court o solve it, but can resort to self help which is recipient chaos.”
In the suit, the national land commission is alleged to have taken 420 acres of Kenya Forest set aside for squatters.
Kamiti forest squatters association had argued that the decision to take away the land by NLC was arrived at without giving them an opportunity to be heard.
The property was invaded by squatters in 1990 from surrounding coffee estate and others who were displaced following clashes in 1992.
The contempt application will be heard on November 8.