Kilifi family given KES 7,000 to vacate one-acre parcel of land after court terms them squatters
A family of 10 at Kwa Ndomo village in Kilifi County is in pain after they were forced to vacate a one-acre piece of land they have called home for decades following a court ruling terming them squatters.
The family has been battling in court for more than 25 years, but their hopes to hold onto the land were squashed by the court leaving them helpless.
Hellen Fondo told journalists at the disputed land on Friday night that the purported owner had threatened to evict them on Saturday, November 12, morning but they got a reprieve after the Sabaki ward Member of County Assembly Rose Baraka intervened.
She added that the ‘owner’ offered each family member KES 7,000 to vacate the land by Sunday morning to pave the way for him to develop the land.
“I have been given three days to vacate and they have given me only KES 7,000, where will that money take me to? This is our home and we are really stranded. The problem started a long time ago when we were told that the land had been sold and it has been a hard life since then,” she said.
Fondo also claimed that the lawyers representing the family abandoned them immediately after they lost the case hence she believes that they had a hand in its outcome.
“The matter went to court but our advocates abandoned us when the order came and we suspect they might have sided with the land owner since he has money,” she added.
Her younger brother Joseph Fondo also claimed that their father was swindled off his land by their neighbour who sold the land immediately after title deeds were issued 25 years ago.
“I was born and bred on this land but someone came claiming it saying that the land was sold to him. We followed up on the matter and discovered that during the titling of the land, the title deed came in the name of our neighbor who instead of reversing it to us, sold it immediately after he received the document and it is now 25 years since the dispute began,” he said.
The Sabaki ward MCA Rose Baraka called on the government to protect its citizens against fraudsters saying that many people in the area were suffering because they were issued with fake title deeds only for some people to come with eviction orders.
“The government should come clear on search matters since title deeds are issued and some years later, people come to claim the same land,” she said.
She added that the money offered to the family was not of any meaningful help since it cannot sustain them.
“We have just agreed to receive the money but I will help them fundraise for more money so that the family can be resettled elsewhere. The KES 7,000 is so little but the family has no option since they are staring at an eviction,” she said.