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CS Njeru: We have sidelined cartels in land sector

The cure for cartels is digitization and that’s why we are keen to ensure it works - Njeru

Cabinet Secretary for Lands, Public Works, Housing and Urban Development Zacharia Njeru has affirmed the government’s commitment to ridding the land sector of unscrupulous individuals.

Njeru who was speaking on KBC Channel 1 at an interview Sunday night told the country that reforms introduced by President William Ruto’s administration since it came into power last year will see the sector operating without meddling from racketeers who have infiltrated the sector over the years.

Channel 1

He highlighted digitization as one of the reform processes the Kenya Kwanza government embarked on to streamline the sector.

“I want to thank those who were before me because they had attempted to digitize land records and where we started from, I want to tell Kenyans we are doing well. When we are fully digitized, it will mean Kenyans will get services in a better, faster and more secure way,” he said

Asked by KBC News Anchor Reginah Manyara how secure the new system is from hacks and infiltration from unauthorized individuals or cons, this is what the CS was categorical, illegal access has been hugely restricted for the interest of citizens.

“I want to assure Kenyans that the system we are using is very secure. We have backups in several areas and what it means is that if the system fails or is hacked, we have a facility to make sure we are back to where we are,” he said

The CS admitted that, for many years, the issue of corruption and cartels in the land registries has been a common subject, giving the sector a bad name. But he warns that it’s no longer business as usual in Ardhi House.

“I am glad to inform Kenyans that this (cartels) will now be history with digitization. Our digitization and automation policy will sideline cartels,” he reiterated

But how has runaway impunity been so widespread in the Ministry of Lands and how come fraudulent individuals have had it easy breaching the systems in the sector?

“Why cartels were coming in is because the processes had hitches. But with proper digitization you will be able to transact, seated at the comfort of your home. You don’t need go between coming to assist you,” he said adding that; “the cure for cartels is a digitization and that’s why we are keen to ensure it works,”

Njeru noted that with the manual system, there had been a lot of insecurity of the land records “where you find records disappearing, and mutated, and this has adversely affected Kenyans when they want to transact on matters land,”

“It has not been easy but I want to tell Kenyans we are there and soon we will be done with Nairobi and rolling out to other counties will be much easier,” he acknowledged

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