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Indigenous communities raise their voices to secure land rights in northern Kenya

An alliance of indigenous organisations (Photo: IMPACT)

Historically, discriminatory land reforms and disregard of the customary tenure system have denied Indigenous Peoples and rural community members in Kenya the legal right to own and manage their lands.

These practices, combined with long-standing systems of oppression and marginalisation, threaten their livelihoods and render them vulnerable to exploitation by major infrastructure projects and extractive activities.

In late 2016, under pressure from land rights activists and organisations, the government of Kenya passed the historic Community Land Act, enabling communities to secure legal title to their traditional lands. The Act included a measure to ensure women, youth, and ethnic minorities have a role in managing the land. But getting a progressive law on the books is one thing; implementation is another story.

Fortunately, Indigenous Movement for Peace Advancement and Conflict Transformation (IMPACT) and its partner organisations are taking the lead to bring the Act to life, by supporting communities to manage their lands sustainably and to demand their rights under the new law.

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