The ongoing land reforms which include digitization of land records and cleaning of registries is set to cost the government over Sh5 billion.
According to stakeholders, the reforms seek to end pains that have rocked land transactions and ownership in the country leading to deaths, violence and so many court cases.
The land sector non-state actors want the government to ensure that through the ongoing reforms issues on land injustices are concluded, concerns on encroachment of community lands are addressed and a framework to support better land use for food security is created.
Aside from that, they also want the county governments to add land issues in the County Integrated Development Plans (CIDPs), so that people’s views are also considered.
The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and European Union (EU) have called upon the government to give an ear to the non-state actors in the sector. The two organizations donated a total of Sh1.35 billion which equals to 20% of the total cost to support the reforms.
“Land reforms is a priority area for FAO and there is need to strengthen non-state actors in order to have land sustainably managed. The funding by FAO and EU is supposed to facilitate the reform processes and implementation of land policies,” said FAO’s Land and Natural Resources officer Husna Mbarak.
She further raised concerns on excessive subdivisions of land across the country saying that it is starting to have ripple effects on food security, land sustainability and the nutritional health of communities.
“It is critical for Kenya to decide how much land is set for agriculture, housing and other uses going forward. Also, it is important to note that about 80 percent of the landmass around arid and semi-arid regions (Asals) remains unutilised,” Mbarak said.