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Despite being dubbed Kenya’s breadbasket, up to 80% of residents in Trans-Nzoia County lack ownership documents for their land, hindering development and financial opportunities, according to Governor George Natembeya.

Poverty and past loan agreements are cited as major roadblocks. Governor Natembeya explained that some residents purchased land from individuals who had used the titles as collateral for loans from the Agricultural Finance Corporation (AFC). With many struggling financially, these loans, ballooning into millions of shillings, have become impossible to repay, leaving the land titles stuck with the AFC.

Governor Natembeya called for collaboration with the national government to expedite the issuance of land titles, particularly those held by the AFC.

Janerose Nasimiyu Mutama, Trans-Nzoia County’s Chief Executive Committee Member for Lands, Physical Planning, Housing and Urban Development, reported progress in specific cases. Her department has been working with the AFC to secure titles for residents of Nabiswa Farm in Kiminini.

Through their intervention, over 40 families who have resided on the farm for decades without proper documentation have reached an agreement. Four representatives from the farm committee will now be entrusted with the collective title deed, previously held by the AFC, to facilitate the issuance of individual land ownership documents.

Mutama emphasized the importance of land titles, enabling residents to develop their farms without fear of repossession. She encouraged residents to proactively approach the lands office to address outstanding land matters and obtain their rightful ownership documents.

The efforts of the county government’s land department were commended by George Mbui, Managing Director of the Agricultural Farmers Cooperation (AFC). He acknowledged the presence of outstanding debts from various farms across the county and expressed willingness to work towards solutions.

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