Kenya News

High court: Displaced Illchamus’ community case listed as an urgent matter

High court: Displaced Illchamus’ community case listed as an urgent matter. The residents who live by the shores of Lake Baringo said their homes have been destroyed and about 18 schools submerged, yet the government has done nothing to mitigate their suffering.

The High Court has certified as urgent a case filed by members of Illchamus community seeking government intervention after being displaced by the rising waters of Lake Baringo.

Justice Weldon Korir directed the 91 petitioners to serve the Attorney General, the ministries of Education, Interior and Devolution with the court documents and wait for further directions of October 8.

The residents said they have exhausted all avenues for their concerns to be addressed but they still remain marginalised and neglected by the government for a long period. They said they now face a bigger crisis that needs urgent intervention.

The petitioners stated that they face unprecedented disaster from rising water levels in Lake Baringo and the government has ignored the adverse effects of the disaster. Further, they said the Ministry of Education plans to reopen schools but their children do not have where to learn because the raging floods swept away classrooms and displaced thousands.

The community wants the court to order the government to intervene as it has enough resources, including funds, to mitigate their suffering. They said the Illchamus community has a population of about 40,000 and live mainly on the shores of Lake Baringo.

“That for many years, the petitioners have faced systemic discrimination, insecurity, loss of property and now massive floods that have displaced almost the entire community,” the petition reads.

The community said they have previously sought the intervention of the court to enforce their rights. Other than perennial flooding, the residents face banditry attacks from Pokot bandits.

Aside from the 18 schools, which have been fully or partly submerged, security agencies such as Kiserian GSU camp, Noosukuro RDU camp and chief’s offices have drowned too.  The floods have also destroyed health facilities and interfered with their livelihoods by rendering roads impassable, destroying shopping centres and irrigation schemes such as Perkerra destroyed.

“Even before the floods, the petitioners were dealing with insecurity problems owing to constant attacks by Pokot bandits. “Education has now become a privilege in a state where education is a basic right for every child,” they said.

Source – BusinessDay

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