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Mombasa County fights to retain powers over Mama Ngina park

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Mombasa County fights to retain powers over Mama Ngina park by Kenyans247(1): Sat 14, November, 2020 08:06am
What you need to know:
Governor Hassan Joho’s administration argues that according to the Constitution, the function of managing Mama Ngina Drive, which it describes as a county park and recreational facility, is bestowed upon it.
Mombasa County says it never gave consent for the hand over of Mama Ngina recreational park to the Tourism ministry.
kenyans247
Governor Hassan Joho’s administration argues that according to the Constitution, the function of managing Mama Ngina Drive, which it describes as a county park and recreational facility, is bestowed upon it.

Through an affidavit by its Legal Services Director Jimmy Waliaula, the county says Mama Ngina Drive cannot be arbitrarily and unlawfully alienated from it as it is for the local public’s benefit.

“The Attorney-General cannot purport to expand its mandate as there are no functional gaps justifying his involvement in managing Mama Ngina Drive,” says Mr Waliaula.

The affidavit is in response to an application by the AG for dismissal of a case challenging the appointment of a board by Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala to manage the park, refurbished at a cost of Sh460 million.


NMK’s role
Mr Waliaula says the National Land Commission needs to be held accountable to the county since it (county) has never consented to any alienation of Mama Ngina Drive.

“The AG and NLC should not purport to arbitrarily and unlawfully alienate it as they are of great importance to the public and ought to be used to their benefit,” states Mr Waliaula.

He adds that the Mama Ngina waterfront is a monument and that its guardian is the National Museums of Kenya, which does not have powers of alienation.

“The function of protecting and maintaining the suit property is vested upon the National Museums of Kenya as the guardian of monuments and the county government as the owner holding it in trust for the residents of Mombasa county.”

He explains that NMK can only relinquish the rights to the county as the owner of the property, not to any other party.

AG’s arguments
AG Kihara Kariuki says the case filed by human rights organisations and four residents of Mombasa, challenging the appointment of the board as announced in a Gazette notice on September 13, is misleading the court.

The AG further says that NMK retains the legal mandate to ensure the heritage value of the site is preserved and that Mombasa has no role in museum and heritage matters.

He adds that the national government stands to lose millions of shillings since the Mama Ngina Waterfront Park is under development so the suspension orders earlier issued affect works.

The case will be heard on December 10.

pmuyanga@ke.nationmedia.com

https://nation.africa/kenya/counties/mombasa/mombasa-county-fights-to-retain-powers-over-mama-ngina-park-3020412

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