The ministry of land yesterday finished a verification exercise that was held to establish the accuracy of ownership details for the thousands of title deeds belonging to Embakasi ranching company members.

The ministry had advertised to undertake the exercise from August 30th to September 3rd as directed by lands CS, Farida Karoney but a two-day extension was added to give members more time.

Embakasi ranching company has been the subject of controversies spanning many years, which led to the President ordering a settlement of all matters pertaining to the land within three months from May 30th, including winding up of the company.

The company has had ownership tussles dating back to its establishment 47 years ago with shareholders claiming to have been short-changed owing to instances of double allocation of parcels and intimidation by powerful individuals. Some members claim to have never been shown their pieces of land since making purchases in the 1970s.

From the exercise, it emerged that only 18,000 ownership documents of the 35,000 plots at the centre of the controversy were clean according to The Star. The ownership of some 15,000 parcels are in contention due to multiple registrations under different names.

In earlier exercises to verify the documents, shareholders had been reluctant to have their documents verified citing fears of being swindled by company directors, surveyors and other officials involved in the saga.

The latest exercise by the ministry of lands dates back to orders by the president in February this year in an effort to settle the more than 10,000 disgruntled shareholders of the ranch. Over the years, many actions have been brought against the directors of the company under the chairmanship of the late Thuita Mwangi.

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