African Union Comes Out in Support of Ogiek Land Rights
The Ogiek, the meanwhile world-famous honey-hunters of the Mau forest in Kenya, booked another success in their struggle for survival and the rights to their forest homeland.
The African Court of Human and People’s Rights of the African Union (AU), following the line of arguments presented by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, ordered the Government of the Republic of Kenya to immediately halt any eviction of Ogiek from their ancestral forests, which the Ogiek had protected since times immemorial. It were the Ogiek who preserved the old growth forest of indigenous trees, resisted against the colonial plantations of non-indigenous species and thereby maintained the capacity of the Mau Forest Range as one of the five major water towers of Kenya until today.
In their struggle for recognition, natural forest- and watershed-protection and the rights to their territory ECOTERRA Intl. stood since 1992 besides the Ogiek, one of the five aboriginal peoples of Kenya (see http://www.ogiek.org).