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County Owning Keroka Town Revealed in Kisii, Nyamira row

Nyamira County Government emerged victorious in a long-standing boundary dispute with neighboring Kisii County concerning the location of Keroka town.

After an 11-year-long struggle over the boundaries of Keroka town, the Lands and Environment Court sitting in Nyamira town decisively settled the matter yesterday, ruling in favor of Nyamira County.

Justice Kamau Mugo, presiding over the case, based his landmark ruling on the report compiled by a team of experts comprising representatives from the National Land Commission (NLC), the Survey of Kenya, and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).

The boundary dispute case, initiated by Rigoma Ward MCA Nyambega Gisesa, sought clarification on the exact boundaries of Keroka town and the general demarcation of Kisii and Nyamira counties.

Justice Mugo directed the Attorney General Justin Muturi to appoint an impartial surveyor from the Ministry of Lands and Physical Planning to oversee the process of determining the precise boundaries of the two counties.

Led by Joseph Munyendo from the Survey of Kenya, Caro Manyange from the IEBC, and Gerishon Otachi from the NLC, the team of experts conducted ground surveys and presented their findings in court. They analyzed various maps and historical records to ascertain the boundaries accurately.

The report concluded that the majority of the built-up areas in Keroka fall within Nyamira County. It emphasized the importance of clearly defining the boundary with permanent beacons to avoid future disputes and ensure clarity for the public and administrative entities.

Justice Mugo clarified that the dispute was not about boundaries but rather about revenue allocation. He cautioned against any interference with the established boundaries and urged both counties to abide by the ruling.

Regarding revenue collection, the judge advised the counties to seek resolution through intergovernmental agreements, failing which they could resort to legal recourse. The ruling was welcomed by Nyamira Governor Amos Nyaribo and the petitioner Nyambega, although Kisii Governor Simba Arati was absent from the proceedings.

The Kisii county government hinted at the possibility of challenging the ruling in the Court of Appeal but was denied a stay of execution by the judge. Overall, the ruling aims to maintain peace and stability by resolving the longstanding dispute over Keroka town’s boundaries.

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