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Kenyans evicted from Mau forest seek Mutunga's intervention

By BOAZ KIPNGENOH | July 3rd 2015 at 07:45:27 GMT +0300

Hundreds of elderly people and their descendants who claim to have been evicted from Mau Forest in 1941 by colonialists yesterday jammed Nakuru Law Courts to seek justice.

Some of the over 700 residents accompanied their lawyer Kipkoech Ngetich to have the case certified as urgent and referred to Chief Justice Willy Mutunga for directions.

They want the CJ to urgently constitute a bench of judges to hear and determine their case.

Their lawyer said the reason his clients wanted the case referred to CJ is because the petition raises issues on interpretation of fundamental freedoms and rights. The evictees  said their rights had been violated and that currently, they are squatters struggling to survive in abject poverty.

Apart from claims of continued harassment by Government officials where they are currently residing in Olenguruone, they said the evictions that took place in September 1941 under the then commander-in-chief of the colony and Protectorate of Kenya Henry Monck-Mason Moore were inhumane.

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The petitioners further claim that in 1997, the Government decided to establish a settlement scheme in Nakuru, Olenguruone and Kiptagich Mau Forest extension to resettle them but those who benefited from the allocation were prominent individuals.

This, according to the petition, led to irregular issuance of titles which were superimposed on the ones issued to them, rendering theirs useless.

As a result, prominent people have used the police to harass them and take their land.

They want to be issued with alternative land or titles for their current residential lands, political caution placed on them removed and the Government ordered to provide them with a road map on how they can access land and social amenities.

Justice Sila Munyao of the Environment and Land Court certified the matter as urgent. Other directions will be issued on July 9.

mau evictions mau forest willy mutunga
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