Elders fear TJRC won’t tackle Nandi land row
A group of Nandi elders have expressed fear that the TJRC report expected to be published soon may fail to fully address historical injustices. The elders claimed that the commission failed to hold a sitting in Nandi despite several appeals. Spokesman Samuel Ng’etich said the Nandi community continue to live as squatters in unhabitable areas since no one is interested in addressing their land issues.
Speaking in Nandi-Hills at the Koitalel Samoei Museum, Nge'tich called on the government to facilitate peaceful return of tea plantations at the expiry of the 99 year lease as part of compensation for the inhuman treatments to natives. He said the hounding of the TJRC chairman Bethwel Kiplagat was part of a conspiracy against the community. “We are foreseeing a situation where the large number of youths facing unemployment could mobilise and use force to take over the farms ones owned by their forefathers if the government does not facilitate smooth return of the farms to the county government,” Ng’etich claimed.
Massive evictions against the Nandi people took place in 1905 after the fatal killing of Orkoiyot Koitalel arap Samoei, who had led the 11 year resistance against the British government. He was killed in the outskirts of Nandi-Hills town by a team of British marines posted to quell the Nandi resistance on October 19th 1905. Ng’etich said Nandi county could be rated as one of the rich regions, majority of the resources belong to multi-national companies registered by the white settlers to manage the plantations. “These farms should be returned as soon as the 99 years lease expires to the county government who would use the resources to alleviate poverty.” He said.