Clans barred from accessing disputed land

County Commissioner Dr. Amed Omar, H.E Alex Tolgos and CEC Shadrack Yatich during the peace meeting held at Tot Catholic church.

The government has directed two clans in Kerio valley to keep off a disputed piece of land they both claim ownership in Kerio valley until the matter is resolved.

Issuing the directive after holding an urgent peace meeting attended by Elgeyo Marakwet Governor Alex Tolgos at Tot Catholic Church, area County Commissioner Dr. Amed Omar said the land at Kachamcham, along river Embobut was henceforth declared a "No go zone" for any of the clans.

Both clans of Kapshoi and Kapsiren who have been fighting over the ownership should desist from setting foot on the farm until they obtain further communication from the government, said the administrator.

He also warned chiefs from assuming roles of arbitrating land feuds saying the role should be left to elders.

Governor Tolgos said the peace stability realised in Kerio valley should be jelously guarded by everyone to avert any attempts of reverting into the dark days of the recent past.

"We cannot afford to revisit the occurrence of few years ago when lives were lost, property destroyed and people displaced from their homes as a result of fighting between two clans living in Tot," said the Governor.

The government authorities from both the national and county government were forced to convene the urgent peace meeting to engage the two clans following reports that they were courting fresh conflict.

A move by one of the clans to clear a section of the land in preparation for cultivation, provoking the other over its ownership was the reason behind the urgent meeting.

Tolgos challenged the two clans to live in peace and embrace harmonious coexistence as well as changing their mindset about being obsessed with "land ownership".

Insecurity do not only fuel hunger but also poverty along the Kerio Valley, said Tolgos.

The Governor attributed the peace enjoyed currently in the region to successful dialogue, intensified security patrols and most importantly, the communities' mutual resolution to embrace peace.

Schools that had been affected by the perennial conflicts in the area have since resumed learning with student numbers rising.

The Governor's delegation of State officials visited St. Paul's Kapkondot and Tot Mixed Secondary shools which were among the most affected institutions.

"Unlike the years when you were frequently distracted by gunshot noise, we want to see you doing the examinations this year in a peaceful environment," Tolgos told the students at Tot Mixed secondary.

Mr Omar said a new administration Police Post at Muruber assured the students of security and would also allow them to concentrate on their studies especially Form Four candidates who were preparing for their examinations.

The meeting at Tot Catholic church was attended by the national government security team together with county government officials and local elders.