2 December 2005

Kenya: 3,155 Mau Evictees to Be Resettled, Says DC

Nairobi — The Government will only resettle 3,155 people out of the 10,200 that were evicted from the Mau Forest.

Narok District Commissioner Hassan Farah said only those whose title had been certified as genuine would be resettled.

He said a list of legitimate squatters had been compiled and sent to the Director of Survey for resettlement.

Farah said yesterday that the handing in of the particulars of the evictees was done after the completion of surveying and demarcation of boundaries between group ranches and the catchment area.

But he said only 3,155 evictees would be resettled because they had genuine title deeds.

Their documents, he said, were verified two months ago.

Farah spoke as the settlers, who were kicked out in July accused the Government of reneging on its promise to resettle them in Nakuru and other parts of the country

They claimed the Government had duped them into supporting the proposed constitution in order to get their land back.

"Our fate is sealed now that the Government lost in the referendum," they said.

The evictees said the resettlement talk was a ploy by the Government to woo Rift Valley voters.

They said they had learnt a lesson and would not trust the State in future.

Yesterday, Farah denied claims that the resettlement of the victims was connected to the plebiscite.

The DC said the idea was mooted in August long before the polls.

Farah said the resettlement would be done in two phases.

The first batch of 282 to be resettled in Nakuru would be given first priority.

The rest, he said, would be resettled later because the Government was currently looking for a place for them.

He told the evictees, who are camping in various trading centres in Narok South and Bomet, to be patient as the resettlement was set to start soon.

Meanwhile, two people were yesterday arrested after they were found cultivating the Mau Forest.

Farah said they would appear in court today charged with trespass.

He said security patrols would be intensified to deter further encroachment on the expansive forest.

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