Environment News

The Environment and Land Court in Nakuru declines to suspend the ongoing Mau Forest evictions.

Mau Forest settlers and other interested parties follow the proceedings during the hearing of Mau Forest eviction case at Nakuru High Court on September 30, 2019. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

A three- judge bench led by Justice Sila Munyao refused to grant injunctions orders sought by 600 land owners.

The Petition was filed by 600 land owners in a bid to stop evictions from the Maasai Mau Forest.

The petitioners filed a class suit in which they sought a court order to stop the government from proceeding with the eviction of settlers said to have encroached the Maasai Mau Forest land.

Kimutai Bosek, the lawyer representing the petitioners informed the court that they were enough compelling reasons so as to issue the order. He mentioned that the eviction was not only apprehensive but also had grave consequences in that families would be forcibly evicted and hence rendered homeless consequently school going kids would have their learning disrupted. Therefore in his opinion, the interim orders sought would be enough to restrain the government from any further interference in form of eviction, intimidation, harassment as well as trespassing.

The state together with other interested parties such as the Friends of Mau Forest Conservation and the Trusted Society of Human Rights opposed the application . The state filed a cross- petition through the Ministry of Lands seeking revocation of title deeds whereas the interested parties claimed that similar orders had been stuck down by a High Court in Kitale.

Justices Sila Munyao, Mohammed Kullow and Ongondo George said that they were not persuaded enough to issue interim orders ruling that their view was to have the matter heard and determined once and for all.

The court however, certified the application as urgent and directed the petitioners to serve the other parties the requisite documents before 28 October, 2018 when the matter will be heard.

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