When media miss the point. The Law on Demolitions and Evictions

The news on this is reported mostly stereotypical – and they miss the point that state organs rarely follow the correct legal procedure.

“Illegal structures” on public land are common in Kenya – e.g. people have often erected their informal settlements on such land, or some who are struggling for income have set up such structures/ businesses on road reserves. In the news we see frequent violent demolishment of illegally erected homes, food stalls, shops for pay phones or kitchen needs, kiosks and even hospitals or schools. Continue reading “When media miss the point. The Law on Demolitions and Evictions”

Evictions and Demolitions on Public land – the legal Procedure

To avoid a stereotypal, superficial reporting on demolitions and evictions, the information below should help. This is the summary of some of the most important legal rules.

Firstly, it is the National Land Commission which must notify the unlawful occupiers of land at least three months prior to the eviction. This must happen with four different means: In writing, in the Gazette, in a newspaper with national circulation and on radio.

This is provided for in section 152 C of the Land Act 2012.

In the light of this provision, was it legal to demolish 300 shops in a market near Moi Girls High School in Nairobi on June 5th, 2018, just a few days after rape cases in that school were reported?

Most probably not. The official in charge of the operation even sidestepped that question; he told the KTN reporter it was not within his mandate to talk about a notice “of two weeks or so”, as the reporter had put it. And that was all that was explained. A well-informed reporter may have asked a better question and not been satisfied with the sidestepping answer.

This is the KTN report on youtube. Continue reading “Evictions and Demolitions on Public land – the legal Procedure”