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Two injured as rival groups clash over land

By | Aug 14th 2009 | 2 min read

By Leonard Korir

Two people were injured and five houses burnt after violence erupted at a ranch in Trans Mara District.

Two groups comprising members of the Shartuka Group Ranch clashed on Wednesday night over a planned land demarcation.

Police officers who went to the scene were forced to retreat after a mob threatened to burn a Government vehicle on fire.

There has been a dispute at the more than 10,000-hectare ranch involving the two groups.

Trouble started after Ministry of Lands surveyors turned up to demarcate the land on orders of one group.

The officers suspended the exercise and fled. One person was taken to Kilgoris District Hospital with an arrowhead lodged in his head.

Scores sustained cuts and bruises but were treated and discharged.

Anthony ole Dapash said he had lost his house in a blaze during the melee. Mr Dapash suspected arson.

Mr Jonathan ole Sakari said the clashes were as a result of two parallel registers of beneficiaries.

"The leaders from the two rival groups must come together and see how they can harmonise the two registers to avoid further conflict," said Sakari.

Locked out

The Court of Appeal had declared the 1992 register genuine dismissing another prepared in 1997.

DC Mathioya Mbugua urged the ranch members to avoid violence as leaders seek solutions.

"We urge members to remain calm and allow the matter be resolved through legally accepted ways instead of engaging in lawlessness," he told a baraza at the ranch, on Thursday.

In June this year, one group threatened to burn down the ministry of lands office in Trans Mara district when word went round that the Government was to issue 336 members with title deeds.

The 876 members are opposed to the demarcation of the 10, 000 hectare ranch on ground that some members have been locked out.

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