Residents of Oldonyiro ward in Isiolo County, through the Samburu Women Trust, filed a memorandum to the National Land Commission’s Isiolo office today detailing historical land abuses in their area.

This is less than a month before the 21st of September 2021 deadline for submitting complaints to the National Land Commission.

The main goal of assisting the community in presenting the memorandum to the National Land Commission. This is to ensure that their complaints are captured by the commission and addressed amicably in order to facilitate the community’s recovery of land taken by the colonial government.

Jane Naini Meriwas, Executive Director of Samburu Women Trust (SWT)

Several acres of land in Oldonyinyo are alleged to be government property, including Isiolo Holding Ground and the Livestock Marketing Division (LMD).

These community claims date back to the Second World War, and we hope that the National Land Commission will guide us in the right direction so that we can reclaim our land and obtain a title deed for the community land, paving the way for community development.

Jane Naini Meriwas, Executive Director of Samburu Women Trust (SWT)

Hon David Lemantile, Member of County Assembly for Oldonyiro Ward, was also present and accused the National Government of failing to return the parcel of land under LMD despite the community having occupied the area for more than 60 years.

He lamented that the Livestock Marketing Division (LMD) occupies thousands of acres of land, making it difficult for the community to implement any development projects for fear of being evicted, despite the fact that the land is idle.

It’s unfortunate that, despite having large tracts of land, we don’t have any development projects in our area. The government recently planned to build a dam (Crocodile Jaw), but it never happened because the community lacks a title deed to the land.

Hon David Lemantile, Member of County Assembly for Oldonyiro Ward

He went on to say that, despite the ward’s vastness, residents prefer to live in trading centers with a few schools, dispensaries, and other social amenities.

As a result, they are unable to construct permanent structures for fear of being demolished by the national government.

Mr. Paul Kasimbu, the Isiolo Land Commission Coordinator, received the memorandum and promised that his office will assist the community in registering the historical land injustice before the deadline.