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Villagers want hospital, police station on disputed land

Thursday, February 22nd, 2024 01:41 | By
Gatukuyu villagers in Gatundu North constituency, PHOTO/Print
Gatukuyu villagers in Gatundu North constituency, PHOTO/Print

Gatukuyu villagers in Gatundu North constituency, Kiambu county now want the government to put up a hospital and expand the existing police station on the 1.8-acre public land at the centre of a protracted dispute.


Residents have been embroiled in a seething row with Gatukuyu Coffee Factory and New Gatukuyu Nursery School Self Help Group, a cluster of elderly women who also claim ownership of the parcel.


While residents insist that the land had been earmarked for construction of the sole public hospital in Mang’u Ward, the group of elderly women insists that the parcel was given to them by former larger Gatundu MP Ngengi Muigai in 1979 to facilitate construction of the first nursery school in the area.


On the other hand, Gatukuyu Coffee Factory which currently owns 5.9 acres of land in the same area also lay claim to part of the disputed land.


Villagers who spoke to journalists lamented that Gatukuyu Shopping Centre failed to develop due to lack of key government services such as a hospital and a police station.


Currently, they said that they are forced to walk tens of kilometers away in search of medication and have been suffering even deaths during emergencies.


“We want to bring to an end the era of going all the way to Thika and Igegania in search of medication. We have suffered for too long and now that we have an empty public parcel here, the government should move quickly and put up a hospital and even expand the existing police station for better services,” Margaret Wambui, a villager said.


A search conducted at the Gatundu Land Registry on November 22, 2023 indicated the land is reserved for a hospital whose proprietor is the Native Land Trust Board, now the County Government of Kiambu.


Currently, a section of the contentious land is being cultivated by individuals in the coffee factory and a nursery school has been put up by the elderly women. Residents said they have all the legitimate documents clearly indicating that the parcel is a public utility earmarked for construction of a hospital saying the ownership tussle informs why the area lacks crucial amenities such as a health facility.

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