The Azimio la Umoja alliance leaders have called on the Lands Adjudication Department, to stop the ongoing demarcation of the Loita land, claiming there were influential leaders who wanted to grab part of the land.
Azimio presidential aspirant, Raila Odinga, wondered why the Lands Department has put a lot of efforts to demarcate the land, a few days to the elections, yet they had ten years to demarcate the land.
The Loita Ward is approximately 2,000 square kilometers and the only Ward in Narok County, where the land is owned communally, as it is yet to be demarcated. The group ranches in the area include Morijo, Entasekera, Ilkerin, Olrote and Mausa.
Loita Ward is also home to the renowned indigenous forest, Loita forest, which is approximately 300 square kilometers and borders Kajiado County.
Despite the land being rich agricultural and natural resources, the people of Loita have remained economically poor due to the high illiteracy levels and poor infrastructure, that limits the movement of goods to the market.
The process of demarcating the Loita land vigorously started this year at Ilkerin Group Ranch.
Odinga recalled how he sacrificed to fight for the protection of the Maasai Mau forest to an extent of losing so many followers from the South Rift, saying he had the same passion of protecting the environment from any form of degradation.
“I said I better go back to my Constituency Kibra to sell Mandazi other than see the destruction of the Maasai Mau forest. The people living around the forest did not vote for me but I do not regret because the country is greater than any individual,” Odinga said.
He spoke at the Entasekera area, Loita Ward in Narok South Sub-county, where he held a campaign rally after attending a church service at Kenya Assemblies of God (KAG) church.
Odinga was accompanied by his running mate, Martha Karua, Kitui Governor, Charity Ngilu, Narok North MP and gubernatorial aspirant, Moitalel Ole Kenta, former Gatanga MP, Peter Kenneth, former Westland MP, Fred Ngumo among others.
The former Prime Minister promised to upgrade the Loita Hospital to level four and employ more health personnel, so that the residents do not have to travel to Narok town to get health services.
“We came early in the morning so that we can listen to your local leaders and know your problems. Now that we have your concerns, we will start working on them immediately, even before the elections,” Odinga said.
“We will develop this area not because we pity you but because you deserve it. You pay taxes like any other Kenyan hence you deserve good services like any other Kenya,” said Odinga.
Martha Karua, asked the voters to support their presidential ambition as they have a track record of development in the dockets they have held in past regimes.
“Between the two pairs you can tell who are genuine and who are not. I ask you people of Loita to vote wisely, so that together we can develop this region,” said Ms. Karua.
The Loita ward has about 12, 000 registered voters according to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) in 2017.