Restituting the land to the Endorois People: a 40-year process

In 2010 the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights issued unprecedented recommendations on the Endorois case. The Commission found that the eviction of hundreds of Endorois families from their traditional land around the Lake Bogoria area was a violation of the Edorois's right to freely practice their religion, their right to land restitution (property), their cultural rights, their right to freely dispose of their wealth and natural resources, and their right to development, as recognized by the African Charter.

In November 2012, members of the Adjudication Working Group at ESCR-Net —including the Centre for Minority Rights Development (CEMIRIDE, Kenya), Minority Rights Group (MRG, UK), Socio-Economic Rights Institute (SERI, South Africa), and Norwegian Center for Human Rights (NCHR, Norway)—facilitated a strategic meeting with leaders of the Endorois community in Kenya, focused on advancing full implementation of the unprecedented recommendations issued by the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights regarding the evictions. The meeting brought together human rights lawyers, activists, and academics from Kenya, South Africa and the US with expertise on enforcement of court decisions, with the main objectives of:

             (1) Ensuring that the emblematic recommendations issued by the ACHPR play a meaningful role in people’s daily lives, and the recommendations are fully implemented; and

             (2) Developing a network of support within the ESCR-Net for collective advocacy on enforcement of this decision and realization of ESC rights for the Endorois community. 

The group continues to discuss different strategies related to land demarcation, compensation levels, and land restitution in procedures that involve the participation of the community. 

Wilson Kipkazi, Secretary and Program Coordinator, Endorois Welfare Council