By Betty Luke
The Turkana community from Ngaremara ward has appealed to the government to intervene and stop a private landowner from illegally occupying thousands of acres of their land.
Led by Isiolo Water Executive Josephine Eregai, area MCA Ekwam Teru and youth leaders, the community said the private investor had started developing about 38, 000 hectares of land in Ndumoru location within the Isiolo-Meru border and asked the State to stop ongoing works.
The community claimed the investor was in the process of illegally acquiring ownership documents and appealed to the National Land Commission (NLC) to halt the process.
“The investor has started erecting beacons and is in the process of acquiring illegal documents that will justify his ownership. We appeal to NLC and other concerned authorities to stop his continued occupation of the land,” said Ms Eregai.
They want the matter investigated and the property protected against any continued occupation by unknown people.
“The government should investigate keenly and ensure justice prevails so that our people get back their land,” said Mr Teru.
The residents spoke after presenting six historical land injustice claims at the Isiolo NLC office that majorly covered on illegal acquisition of their land, in thousands of hectares, by the government for military installations.
Citing three military camps established in the area, they said the injustices had seen thousands of families displaced from their ancestral land threatening pastoralism which is their lifeline.
“Where will we live? Our animals have moved to neighbouring wards because there is no place for grazing. Our people cannot practice farming,” said Mr Zachary Sileta, a youth leader.
The residents lamented that the areas reportedly grabbed had public institutions and facilities that they can no longer access.