News Column

Residents Want Land Ban Lifted

August 4, 2014

Wanjohi Gakio

RESIDENTS of Uaso Narok Settlement Scheme in Nyahururu district have asked the government to lift caveat imposed on title deeds a year ago.

Through their spokesman John Barno, the residents said besides being barred from selling, buying and transacting any business with the documents, the farmers cannot get loans from banks using the titles as collateral.

The caveat was imposed following a dispute between the 10,000 residents and the Kenya Forest Service.

The KFS says the residents have been living on forest land.

But the residents peg their hope on the title deeds given to them by the Kanu regime.

The say the own the land genuinely.

"It is the work of the government to know which land is in the forest or where people should live. Giving us title deeds in 2002 indicated that the land was not in the forest, hence there is no way the government should contradict itself since we did not grab or give this land to ourselves," Barno said.

For the more than ten years that they have live on the scheme, Barno said they have been threatened with eviction through circulated leaflets and court action.

"Wild animals have also roamed on our farms killing us, our livestock and destroying our crops and the Kenya Wildlife Service does not help us. They say we live in the wildlife habitat," he said.

Barno said there are no roads, schools and other forms of development.

He said residents are not allowed to plough using tractors.

"That is why we want a serious dialogue with the government because we want justice for our people," Barno said.

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Source: AllAfrica

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