Na­tional As­sem­bly urged to block lease of 40,000 acres oc­cu­pied by whites

The Star (Kenya) - - Politics Parliament -

The Na­tional As­sem­bly has been pe­ti­tioned to block the lease re­newal of more than 40,000 acre tea farms white set­tlers have oc­cu­pied since 1895 in Nandi county.

Nandi Hills MP Al­fred Keter pre­sented the pe­ti­tion in the House on be­half of his con­stituents. He cau­tioned the gov­ern­ment against re­new­ing the lease sin­gle-hand­edly, with­out in­volv­ing and lis­ten­ing to pub­lic views as pro­vided in the Con­sti­tu­tion. Keter said vast tracts, whose 99-year lease pe­riod ex­pires in 2020, should not be re­newed but given back to the Nandi com­mu­nity. The res­i­dents were al­legedly evicted by the set­tlers be­fore In­de­pen­dence to set up multi­na­tional tea com­pa­nies.

Keter said his con­stituency and Tin­deret are the most af­fected. “The pe­ti­tion­ers urge the Lands com­mit­tee to es­tab­lish the sta­tus of the parcels,” Keter said. Tar­geted tea es­tates are in Kip­ke­lion, Kip­keikei, Kap­sumb­weyo, Che­momi, Sa­vani and Sep­ton.

REUTERS

Work­ers pick tea leaves at a plan­ta­tion in Nandi Hills on Novem­ber 5, 2014/

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