February 28 - December 7, 2018
Forest Peoples Programme (FPP)
In response to forced evictions of the Sengwer peoples and risk of eviction of Ogiek communities in Kenya, FPP used the SRM to substantially reduce the threat to these communities and securing the recognition of customary tenure through the implementation of Kenya’s recent legal developments and enforcing EU policies requiring human rights-based development cooperation. To do so FPP pursued domestic and regional (EACJ) judicial openings, obtained community title access for Sengwer and Ogiek communities, and advocated for the suspension of the EU WaTER project until it is restructured to protect the rights of implicated communities. Besides legal advocacy, FPP also utilized strategic dialogue, pursued a communications/media campaign, and mobilized communities for outreach.
Though the Sengwer and Ogiek cases have advanced toward securing court rulings that protect communities from violence and secure their rights to customary lands, all have yet to be decided (decisions are imminent- 2019). Building on the adoption of the Bungoma County Forest Act, a strong alliance of forest dwellers and pastoralists was also formed (CLAN) to engage in community-county dialogues to support community tenure-based approaches to forest conservation including mapping customary lands, registering land claims, and applying for community land titles.