Rights group urges Kenyan government to stop parcelling Endorois community land without consultation
Minority Rights Group International (MRG) and Endorois Welfare Council (EWC) condemns the use of excessive force by the Kenyan police against the Endorois community in the Mochongoi Forest, Marigat, Baringo County on 14 February.
A group of Endorois peacefully assembled on 14 February to protest the Ministry of Lands’ planned issuance of title deeds and parcelling of their land to non-Endorois. Disturbing video footage shows police beating and arresting Endorois youth. The violence occurred during a meeting with the Marigat District Commissioner, to discuss a land dispute between the Endorois and unknown men who had attempted to sub-divide a piece of land the Endorois claim is theirs.
The Endorois understand that the Ministry of Lands is set to issue title deeds for the disputed land in March 2014. Their rights over this land were specifically recognised by the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights in a February 2010 decision.
Despite the African Commission’s landmark ruling that found the Kenyan government responsible for violating the Endorois’ rights to property, to culture, to development, to free disposition of natural resources and to practice religion, by evicting them from their lands to make way for a wildlife reserve, the government has so far failed to provide a clear plan on how it is going to implement the ruling. This conduct by the Kenyan security forces is also a clear violation of the Constitution of Kenya, as it has failed to respect the right to assembly, demonstration, picketing and petition, as stated in Article 37, in addition to failing to observe the safeguards on Community Land as stated in Article 63.
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