Nairobi banks on technology to curb corruption in land deals

By Semaj Itosno, Nairobi, Kenya

The high level of corruption in land deals that has bedeviled Nairobi for decades could soon be a thing of the past. Plans are now underway to digitally map out all properties in the city, a move that may end land fraud.

Technically referred to as a valuation roll, the digital inventory shall be publicly available for review by those interested in purchasing land. It will be therefore be difficult for goons to sell land that is not available or land that is already sold .

It has been common in Nairobi to find two people owning title to the same piece of land due to double selling by unscrupulous traders.

The Nairobi Metropolitan Development has already invited consultants to digitise the county’s valuation roll that will incorporate Geographic Information System (GIS) technology which will capture, visualise and manage data collected during the digital inventory creation on a “plot-to-plot” basis.

The current valuation roll, a database detailing properties, their owners and tenants, was first developed in the 1980s and is supplemented annually. 

According to a notice published in the media," the consultants will be expected to obtain data chronicling the sales history of the properties while also carrying out a sensitisation campaign for tenants, businesses and landlords."

Once the database is completed, the consultants will train county staff on its use before transferring the system’s management.

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