25 July 2005

Kenya: Leaders Threaten to Invade Forest Land

Nairobi — Leaders from Rift Valley yesterday resolved to lead those evicted from Mau Forest back to the land.

The leaders, including 18 Members of Parliament said they had ended negotiations with the Government over the Mau evictions.

They asked the Government to resettle the 10,000 or they would take the matter into their own hands.

Speaking at Nakuru's Afraha stadium, the leaders accused the Government of violating the rights of the evictees as they had title deeds.

The leaders resolved to remain united in addressing issues affecting the community.

The MPs included Henry Koskey (Tinderet), Gideon Moi (Baringo Central), William Ruto (Eldoret South), Musa Sirma (Eldama Ravine) and Nick Salat (Bomet).

Ruto said the evictees had a right to live and own land in Narok. He told them to demand back their land as they had title deeds. "The evictees have a constitutional right to live there. They should not beg for it," Ruto said.

Moi was cheered by the crowd when he said the community "has the time, resources and opportunity to engage the Government at whatever level" over the eviction.

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