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Referral hospital denies claim of title revocation

By WYCLIFF KIPSANG
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Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH) has refuted claims that the construction of a Sh28 billion hospital in Eldoret has been revoked over land ownership dispute.

MTRH chief executive Wilson Aruasa on Thursday dismissed as misleading a report attributed to the National Land Commission (NLC) to the effect that 200 acres allocated for the construction of the facility has been revoked.

Dr Aruasa clarified that the title deed for the land situated in Kiplombe – on the outskirts of the town – is still intact and that plans for the construction of the 2,000 bed capacity facility is still on course.

“At no time has the land title been revoked by the NLC. The claims are outrageous,” Dr Aruasa said.

He was reacting to an online report that claimed the land had been reverted to the Kenya Prison Service.

The report claimed that the hospital land was part of 150 public plots allocated to influential individuals and institutions.

According to the report, NLC gazetted the decision following investigations and public hearings by the commission.

Other prime plots which are listed as grabbed include the county headquarters in Eldoret where Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago’s office is located.

“We ask residents to ignore the report. It was not in any way connected to the land where the multibillion shilling referral hospital will be constructed,” Dr Aruasa said.

He said the new referral facility will decongest MTRH, which caters for patients from North Rift, western Kenya, Uganda, South Sudan, Rwanda and Burundi.

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Upon completion of the project, the current health facility at MTHR will be handed over to Uasin Gishu County, which has no proper referral hospital.

Dr Aruasa added that the construction plans of the new facility have been finalised and the work is expected to start soon.

There had been a long-standing legal battle between the hospital and the Kenya Prison Service over ownership of a section of the land.

But Dr Aruasa said that the dispute was resolved after the NLC permitted the use of the property for the hospital project.

Governor Mandago recently acknowledged that the county government does not have a title deed for its headquarters.

He blamed land grabbers for rushing to court whenever they are asked to leave public land.

The governor decried rampant land grabbing in the area, saying the county has lost a lot of land to grabbers working in collusion with officers from the land office.

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