Here is the next example of the mounting stack of stories dealing with poor villagers being displaced for Eco-business ventures. Recently there have been postings here about similar stories in Central America and Africa. It is amazing that in an era when we are supposed to be educated about the mistreatment of Africans and Native Americans in the past we still allow such practices. This seems to feed into the desires of the elite to remove people from rural areas. The elites need the populations in the world to be within the highly regulated and controlled cities. This is done under various environmental causes. In this this tribal land was bought by charities that claim to protect African nature and wildlife. How can you justify using violence against an indigenous culture to protect natural habitat? What would be more natural than an indigenous people. As the UN’s environmental and bio-diversity treaties have outlined, nature will have more rights than man.
Members of the Samburu people in Kenya have been abused, beaten and raped by police after the land they lived on for two decades was sold to two US-based wildlife charities, a rights group and community leader have alleged.
The dispute centres on Eland Downs in Laikipia, a lush area near Mount Kenya. At least three people are said to have died during the row, including a child who was eaten by a lion after the Samburu were violently evicted in November last year.
The London-based NGO Survival International said the Samburu were evicted following the purchase of the land by two American-based charities, the Nature Conservancy and the African Wildlife Foundation.
The groups subsequently gifted the land to Kenya for a national park, to be called Laikipia National Park.
Survival International said the land was officially owned by former president Daniel arap Moi, although AWF simply said it bought it from a private landowner.
With nowhere to go, around 2,000 Samburu families stayed on the edge of the disputed territory, living in makeshift squats, while 1,000 others were forced to relocate, Survival said.
Jo Woodman, a campaigner for Survival, said the pastoralist Samburu had reported constant harassment from police with women allegedly raped, animals seized and an elder shot as recently as last month.
“There has been an ongoing, constant level of fear, intimidation and violence towards the community, which has been devastating,” Woodman said.
A community leader, who did not wish to be named, described police harassment as enormous. He said police beat people, burned manyattas or traditional homesteads and carried out arbitrary arrests during the period leading up to and including the eviction last year. He said they also confiscated many animals and the intimidation has continued.
“The situation has been really bad for a long time,” he said. “[The Samburu] have nothing. Things like bedding and utensils were burned.”
Kenyan police were not available on Wednesday to comment on the allegations.