Rev. Mutava Musyimi, former Member of National Assembly Mbeere South, found himself in hot soup after unveiling his selected committee to oversee the process of fresh subdivision and demarcation of contested Mwea settlement scheme without involving the residents.
It was a surprise for Makima and Mwea Ward residents where the land lies, when Mutava read the names of the committee members in broad daylight at Gikuru market during a meeting he had organised.
Locals said they were neither consulted nor involved by Mutava Musyimi in selecting the committee, blaming the former legislator over an attempt to spearhead subdivision of Mwea land through proxy, a repeat of fraudulent exercise that he allegedly did in 2013 and 2014 respectively.
During the meeting Mutava said the committee which comprises of 40 members from the five wards in Mbeere South was balanced to tackle the land matters, saying that the land will only benefit Mbeere South residents urging the outsiders to forget about it.
Locals said that Mutava’s act was in contravention with Kenya 2010 Constitution on public participation and also the agreement they made through public baraza on Makima ACC office grounds to elect for themselves committee members as their representatives.
These representatives would sit in the committee that will spearhead peaceful allocations of parcels of land in Mwea land. It was a concern to the local residents on where Mutava got the mandate to select a committee for subdivision of mwea settlement scheme when he is not elected over the already elected members.
Locals living in the highly contested land said they felt intimidated by Mutava’s decision to go against their will by selecting his committee without their knowledge only to impose it to them.
During the meeting, Lorna Ndunge a resident of the mwea settlement scheme told the baraza that she was among the people who were being evicted in the bloody evictions that saw one young man dead and several others suffered bullet wounds.
She told the baraza that she has never heard of any meeting to give names of who will represent them in matters of mwea land throughout her time in Gikuru.She said that she almost fainted when she heard Mutava reading the list of names he had picked for this exercise.
Among the committee nominees by Mutava ,was a former DC and allegedly a self made land activist ,who almost lost his life as he attempted to occupy a large piece of land which he had been given in Mwea settlement scheme.
He was clobbered by locals who were defending evictions ,attacked by machete living him for dead before he was rescued by well wishers.
The government would later suspend the process of resettlement.
His presence sent a shivering mood to needy Makima and mwea locals.
Ndunge further said that as a resident on behalf of all the residents, they will never recognize that committee because the selected people cannot be trusted as they were all involved in the previous fraudulent subdivision exercise that let to bloodshed of the residents.
Locals wondered why Mutava was campaigning with Mwea settlement scheme when they were still traumatised after Tana and Athi River Development Authority (TARDA) evicted them in another contested land near masinga dam recently forcing them to seek refuge at Ndunguni primary school for over three months.
They accused Mutava for being interested only with their votes but never supported them when they were in need.
It was alleged that the former law maker was the go in between the investors and the land Tarda claimed ownership which had been leased to an investor well connected in the government leading to locals being rendered homeless after their houses were demolished.
When Philip Nzangi, the Makima Ward Member of County Assembly (MCA) was contacted, he said that the procedure used to pick the committee members by the former law maker was a big joke and an insult to the democratic right of Makima and Mwea people in electing their representives and therefore he did not recognize that committee and its activities.
“I do not recognize that committee and it’s activities, as the people’s representative, I was not consulted at all by the former MP when he engineered formation of the committee. It is important to understand that, I already have an agreement with my electorate that they would directly elect people to form the committee that will represent them in any matter concerning their land and therefore anything short of that is unwelcome and a serious insult to the people of Makima” stated Nzangi.
On the other hand, Mbeere South MP Geoffrey King’ang’i also said that he was not aware of the committee and cannot support a move that will divide the people.
“Our people have enjoyed peace and tranquility and the plan by the former MNA is to bring unnecessary tension to the people in this electioneering period ,” said King’ang’i.