Push for more money to resettle the displaced, Orengo urges MPs - Daily Nation

Push for more money to resettle the displaced, Orengo urges MPs

Sunday November 6 2011

Lands minister James Orengo (right) during celebrations at Kamara trading centre in Kuresoi on Friday when he toured a farm where families evicted from the Mau Forest will be settled. Photo/FILE

Lands minister James Orengo (right) during celebrations at Kamara trading centre in Kuresoi on Friday when he toured a farm where families evicted from the Mau Forest will be settled. Photo/FILE 

By BENEDICT TIROP [email protected]

Lands minister James Orengo has urged Members of Parliament to petition the government to provide more funds for the resettlement of internally displaced persons in the country.

He said the money that had been allocated was not enough for resettling the IDPs and other Kenyans evicted from Mau Forest.

Mr Orengo, who is also the Ugenya MP, said the resettlement of displaced persons in the country needed more funds so that the issue could be addressed once and for all.

He toured plots

He called on MPs, some of whom he said have been accusing his ministry of inefficiency and bias, to petition the government to allocate more money for the programme.

The minister was speaking at the Talai informal settlement in Kericho when he toured plots that will be allocated to members of the community who have been squatters for the last 75 years.

The Talai were banished to the remote Labwe Valley in South Nyanza by colonialists for the fierce resistance they posed to them.

Mr Orengo said that the government had identified land as the major cause of conflicts in the country and had, therefore, put in place laws meant to curb the disputes.

“Because land has been identified as the major cause of conflicts among communities in Kenya, the government has put in place laws aimed at minimising occurrences of the disputes,” he added.

He cited Rift Valley and Coast provinces as having had the highest number of cases of land disputes, including a high percentage of landless local people.

Mr Orengo said every Kenyan had a right to settle anywhere in the country but noted that the rights to land for the local communities should be respected.

The minister urged members of the Kalenjin community to remain in the Orange Democratic Movement, saying it catered for their interest.

The United Democratic Movement has no chance of forming the next government, he added.

“We urge you to remain steadfast in ODM. You cannot move from a fully furnished house to an incomplete one,” he said.

The minister said they had found land for the resettlement of the Mau evictees in parts of Mau Narok, Molo and Kuresoi.

Energy assistant minister Magerer Langat, one of the politicians who accompanied Mr Orengo, said that the government would speed up the resettlement, adding that they had found adequate land for the programme.