North Rift MPs condemn Chesumei evictions

A woman pounders her next move after being evicted from Kiptuywa village in Nandi county. [Duncan Oholla, Standard]
North Rift MPs have criticised the eviction of more than 500 families in Chesumei constituency, Nandi County on Thursday last week.

Led by Tindiret MP Julius Meli, the lawmakers visited the evictees who are currently living in makeshifts shelters near the disputed land in Kaptobongen village on Saturday and assured them that an amicable solution will soon be found.

 “As leaders from this region we condemn how the court acted on the matter that has eventually rendered residents who have lived here for over 40 years homeless,” said Meli.

He said more than 1000 children learning in various schools including Kaptobongen, Kaptuiya primary schools and Tindinyo Secondary School have been rendered homeless in evictions.

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 “Candidates preparing for the national examinations have been negatively affected and this may lead to poor performance,” the education committee chairman in the National Assembly said.

Wilson Kogo (Chesumei), Oscar Sudi (Kapseret), Nandi deputy governor Yulita Cheruiyot and Kilimili MP Didmus Barasa are among the leaders who visited the affected families.

 Kogo described the eviction as inhumane saying it exposed young children to chilly conditions.

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“There are infants who have been exposed to cold weather and they have no enough food to eat since the households’ businesses are inflicted, impoverished families will have nothing to cater for their kids and health problems drag down children,” Kogo said.

He warned politicians against using the evictions to evoke tribal hatred among communities living in the area.

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“The luhya and Kalenjin communities have been living harmoniously for decades. We can’t allow cheap politics to divide our people. We are asking them (politicians) to stop inciting residents,” Kogo warned.

Sudi condemned the evictions and urged opposition MPs to stop dragging the name of the Deputy President into the land row.

Kimilili MP Didmus Barasa urged the Luyha community living in Nandi to live peacefully together with their Kalenjin neighbours.

He urged the communities to ignore remarks by a section of western politicians whom he accused of preaching negative ethnicity.

“You have been with us here for a long time and we have not heard of conflict among the residents here,” said Barasa.

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Nandi deputy governor Yulita Cheruiyot said the county government will play a key role in ensuring that the protracted land matter is resolved.

 “The county government is dedicated to bringing normalcy to the victims and there should be a way out of addressing the matter rather than subjecting mothers to impunities that come with the destruction of shelters and harassment,” said Mrs. Mitei.

She pledged that the county will work together with the humanitarian agencies including the Red Cross to provide food and other humanitarian aid to victims of the evictions.

Evictions of the residents from the 50-acre land was executed last week after a 2017 court ruling.

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North RiftChesumei constituencyEvictions