These land in­va­sions must be stopped

The Star (Kenya) - - Voices -

S ix peo­ple have died in Laikipia ( see P33) and 20 peo­ple have died in Marak­wet (see P7) as pas­toral­ists pur­sue graz­ing for their cat­tle.

Gov­ern­ment seems pow­er­less to pro­tect landown­ers, both large and small, from armed in­vaders who are steal­ing live­stock as well as get­ting grass for their cat­tle.

The eco­nomic con­se­quences for Kenya are po­ten­tially dis­as­trous. Live­stock pro­duc­tion will plum­met. Tour op­er­a­tors are threat­en­ing to can­cel book­ings in the con­ser­van­cies in Laikipia, now a ma­jor tourist at­trac­tion. The Sera Rhino Sanc­tu­ary has al­ready been in­vaded so the fu­ture of the rhino in Kenya is in doubt.

This is not an issue of poor peo­ple seek­ing graz­ing dur­ing the dry sea­son. This is a power play by big men who hide il­licit funds in huge herds of live­stock and then use them to try and grab other peo­ple’s land.

Both cen­tral and county gov­ern­ments are paral­ysed. The po­lice do not want to in­ter­vene.

Once again Kenya stands on the brink of an­ar­chy. Some­one must do some­thing.

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