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Community clashes with police over land

25 March 2014, 13:39 Wilshere

Nakuru - Members of the Ogiek Community on Monday had a confrontation with the police after they stopped land owners from ploughing their farms in Ngongongeri, Njoro district.

Anti-riot police from Njoro Police Station had hard time in controlling the hostile crowd that claimed that the land in dispute was their ancestral home.

They argued that the High Court had ordered that they be resettled and thus their eviction was illegal.

Simon Kiprotich, who was among the protesters, said the law-enforcers were illegally protecting the "landowners" so that they could plough the land.

“This police are just protecting these people yet this land is our ancestral land,” he said.

There has been an ugly confrontation between members of the community and individuals claiming to own the land, with the community saying they have the right to own the land since it was their ancestral home.

A High court last week ruled that they should not be evicted and that alternative land should be given to them.

However, the Njoro police boss, Charles Owino said that members of the Ogiek community were occupying the land illegally.

He said some of them had gone ahead and leased the land to other parties who were cultivating it.

He said his officers will continue protecting owners who have genuine title deeds and ensure that they cultivate it.

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