•  “According to our culture, even if you bury someone for one day, the spirit is there that is why we are not worried as a family because we have done our part,” David Ruto said

RIP on a gravesite
RIP on a gravesite

A family in Koroto sub-location within Baringo North is still fighting for justice after their kin was exhumed seven months ago from its grave next to a classroom in the disputed land.

Family’s spokesperson David Ruto said the body of deceased Paul Kipchabas Ruto was hurriedly exhumed by the county government public health officials under tight security and taken to Baringo county referral hospital mortuary.

Ruto who spoke to the press at Kabarnet town claimed that they have not been successful in overturning the Magistrate court ruling despite filing a case at the Eldoret High Court.

He maintained that they gave the deceased a befitting sendoff according to a will he wrote to be buried next to the classroom of Koroto Day Secondary School which he claimed to be part of his 20 acres land hived illegally by the school.

“According to our culture, even if you bury someone for one day, the spirit is there that is why we are not worried as a family because we have done our part,” he said.

The family spokesperson called on the County Director of Education through the Sub County Education Officer to act fast by closing the school as he claims that the disputed land where the institution sits has not been registered yet it is enrolling students.

Family’s lawyer Jacob Cherop stated that the exhumation ruling was unfair to them since an earlier injunction case filed on January 2021 under section 3a and 63(c) of the Civil Procedure Act by the deceased seeking to restrain BOM of both Koroto day secondary, Koroto primary schools and county government of Baringo from further engagements on the disputed land was not honoured by the court.

“The fence and other structures are still intact but the school board and the headteacher have never engaged them until the demise of our brother who died from a terminal illness,” he said.

Edna Chebon, a family member, said the deceased was not the only one that has been buried in the disputed land since other members from the Kamengich clan have also been buried there.

Chebon stated that it was unfortunate that the deceased who was the sole complainant has passed on during a time when he was still searching for justice.

Andrew Kimuge, son to the deceased revealed that the ten acres which the family willingly surrendered for primary school to be established and the new day secondary school in the same property which has caused them to be displaced does not even have an allotment letter to justify their ownership.

Bishop William Kitilit, chair of Baringo Human Rights Consortium said that the matter was hurriedly ruled without the intervention of the elders who might know the historical land boundaries of the area.

Kitilit stated that if such conflicts were not resolved on time, it could breed and heighten animosity between members of the society and their institutions.

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