The Trans Nzoia Governor, Patrick Khaemba has said that lack of space for expansion has hampered planning for Kitale town.
The governor who was speaking on Monday when he launched the Municipal Charter at the county headquarters said that available public land in town had been grabbed and has legal restrictions.
He disclosed that he had appointed a taskforce that will look into the processes used to acquire land and their recommendations will help his government get back land that was acquired illegally.
Khaemba said efforts by his administration to acquire prison land that was given to the county by President Kenyatta has not been successful as a few individuals in the national government were not keen to let go the 10 acre piece of land that would have helped his administration expand the town.
“I want to ask the president to assist us get the prison land, there are some individuals who are blocking our bid to acquire the land,” he said.
He complained that huge chunk of land around town is owned by prisons department, Railways and National Museums of Kenya and his administration has faced legal handles in trying to acquire both public and private land.
“This town was planned by colonial masters when the population of the town was too small, the 2009 population census put Kitale town population at 140,000 people today I think the population is ten times more and thus the need for re-planning for the town,” he said.
The governor told residents that at least 5 per cent of the population in Trans Nzoia move to town to search for white color jobs or do business and thus the need to expand and plan better for the county headquarters.
He dismissed his critics who have blamed him for slow development of the town saying that all his projects will soon be completed.
The governor blamed contractors for delay in the mega projects such as Kitale bus stage saying the delay was also caused by the legal process in cancelling one contract to engage another.
He asked the municipal board headed by chamber of commerce president, Martin Waliaula to work with his government as a team for the success of Kitale town and other towns.
“In your planning please use the CDIDP and the integrated plan for Kitale town. I also urge you to consult widely by bringing all stake holders on board,” he said.
He hinted at establishing a new dumping site for better waste management adding that his administration is drafting a policy that will see all business proprietors being held accountable for cleaning of their premises and the environs to keep the town clean.
The Trans Nzoia West Deputy County Commissioner, Khalif Abudulahi who was present said that the national government will work together with the county government for better service delivery.
The municipal charter will now give the board the mandate to work within stipulated laws.
By Pauline Ikanda