The Struggle for Women to Own Land

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Miriam Gathigah – IPS News  – Thursday, 14 July, 2011

NAIROBI, Jul 14, 2011 (IPS) – Even at the best of times, obtaining a title deed from the ministry of lands is a difficult process. But as the minister of lands admitted on Jul. 13 that his office is rife with corruption, the disorganisation of this office means Kenyan women are no closer to owning land.

“It has become impossible to reclaim illegally-acquired land as powerful individuals collude with corrupt officials in my ministry to acquire illegal title deeds,” said James Orengo, the lands minister.

But, right’s experts say, Orengo should have addressed corruption a long time ago and it only delays women’s access to land.

“It was very progressive for the minister to admit that corruption is rife in the ministry. But that has a negative impact on the struggle to have more women own land. Fighting corruption will take centre stage while land ownership for women will seem like a non-issue,” said Grace Gakii, a gender expert in Nairobi. . .

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