Senate summons Tobiko, Natembeya over eviction

Tuesday, November 5th, 2019 05:31 |

Environment Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko and Rift Valley Regional Commissioner George Natembeya are set to appear before the Senate Justice and Legal Affairs Committee this week over the Maasai Mau Forest evictions.

Chairman Samson Cherargei his committee had summoned the two to explain why they allowed eviction of thousands of settlers without compensating and relocating them to alternative places.

Tobiko and Natembeya are also expected to shed light on the status of the title deeds, which the settlers are holding for the forest land.

Order eviction

Speaking after attending a church service at St. Barnabas ACK church in Kapsabet town on Sunday, Cherargei faulted the manner in which the eviction process was carried out by the government, claiming it infringed on rights of the settlers.

Cherargei, who is also Nandi Senator, said the CS should have sought alternative land for the settlers before ordering their eviction from the Maasai Mau in Narok.

“We have summoned the Environment CS and Rift Valley Regional Commissioner to appear before the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee which I chair on Thursday,” he said.

On Friday, Tobiko led a multi-agency team in a tree planting exercise in the Maasai Mau forest.

He maintained that the government would not compensate the  settlers for the “crime they committed in the water tower”.

“No one can make a valid voice of compensation. How can one even make a case or even argue they were duped? How can you claim that you did not know that it was a forest”? asked Tobiko.

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