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MEMORANDUM ON PAST INJUSTICES SUBMITTED TO TJRC BY THE AJURAN COMMUNITY MEMBERS OF WAJIR COUNTY.

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INTRODUCTION

We the undersigned community members of the Ajuran of Wajir County do hereby submit the following Memorandum on marginalization and other related issues pertaining to social injustice.

1.

THE PROFILE OF THE COMMUNITY.

Ajuran is a large Kenyan-Somali clan living in Wajir West, Wajir East and Wajir North constituencies and other parts of the country. The community is one among the three major clans in Wajir County; the others being Ogaden and Degodia. They speak both Borana and Somali languages. Of all the Somali clans, they are the earliest inhabitants of the former Wajir West constituency that stretched from Godoma to AdeMasajida, having migrated from present day Somalia around 1700 AD following the collapse of Ajuran Sultanate in Benaadir. Consequently, the former Wajir West constituency is the ancestral home of the Ajuran community. Sadly, through systematic injustices and machinations, the Ajuran community has been dismembered, deprived, dispossessed, consigned for extinction. The injustices meted out on the community fall within the following thematic areas: -

2.

STATE OF EMERGENCY.

Ajuran community suffered most under the infamous state of emergency declared in Northern Kenya in 1964. All the concentration camps (Kijiji) created in the region were within Ajuran dominated areas namely Ademasajida in Habaswein, Griftu, Buna and Gurar. The security forces under the guise of military operation inflicted gross human rights violations on the community. A case in point is the 1966 massacre of 32 persons at Buna watering point. In this incident, a people innocently going about their normal duties were encircled and murdered in cold blood and their bodies were dumped in the wells because a military truck Page 2 of 14

was blown up by land mine planted by bandits the army was battling to uproot. Also, seven persons were killed by the military between Ademasajida and Merti area.

Up north, a combined contingent of Kenyan and Ethiopian forces settled in Danaba. Residents who lived around those areas namely Danaba, Qudama, Balowle and Gulani were all massacred; thousand of herds of camel, cattle, goats and sheep were driven away and given to Ethiopian forces as an appreciation for the helping hand that was extended and a pact honoured. For the Ajuran victims, livelihoods were lost and poverty pitched tents early and grew ever since. As a further show of appreciation, the Kenya government surrendered Qadaduma to Ethiopian government.

3.

LAND CONFLICTS AND DISPLACEMENTS.

During colonial period, Ajuran community inhabited the former Wajir West constituency, a region that stretched from Godoma in the north to ademasajida, close to Habaswein district, in the south. However, due to its compassion stemming from its Islamic faith, the community accommodated other Somali clans, with whom they shared ancestry and brotherhood in faith, as guests. Unfortunately, not all good gesture is reciprocated or held as sacrosanct. Degodia guest sneaked in more of their own behind the backs of their benefactor and as their numbers snowballed, instigated fracas and mischief. Frictions were generated and as a way of managing the problem, the colonial government demarcated grazing land. The Ajuran community had their ancestral land to themselves once more. Through the demarcated grazing land, the colonial administration protected Ajuran land from intruders especially ever

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migrating Degodia clan from Ethiopia. The aim was to avert conflict over natural resources with the view of maintaining law and order.

However, with the coming of independence in 1963, such demarcations were voided. The Degodia freely moved into Ajuran traditional grazing areas. They bought foothold by bribing corrupt provincial administration officials to secure administrative government positions like chiefs. Such compromised government officials looked the other way as Degodia community migrated into Wajir district in general and former Wajir West constituency in particular from Odo in Ethiopia. Such officials further betrayed their trust by issuing these illegal immigrants with national identity cards, favouring them over bona fide citizens. For instance, in 1980 all the Ajuran chiefs in major locations of Wajir West such as Griftu, Eldas, Arbajahan, Wagalla and Hadado were made to swap station with Degodia chiefs. During this stinct, the Degodia chief facilitated issuance of identity cards to their clansmen from the heartlands of Ajuran territory.

They also used other uncouth strategies. A senior chief of the Degodia clan asked young carefree ladies of his clan take departmental heads for boy friends and thereby all key officials were ensnared. Having played on the greed and lust of the officials to compromise them, the Degodia clan engaged in orchestrated expansionist programme to establish themselves in areas hitherto under the ownership of the Ajuran. The Degodia used their enhanced numbers to capture the Wajir west seat, adding a potent card to their tools of conquest and eventually dominating grazing land, water resources and settlements. Frustrated and pained by indifference of provincial administrators to its plight, the community shifted their support to nascent opposition political Page 4 of 14

parties and fielded a candidate on opposition ticket (Ford Asili) in 1992. Its victory was stolen and given to KANU candidate who happens to be of the Degodia clan.

The table below chronicles how the Wajir West parliamentarian seat seesawed between Ajuran and Degodia clan between 1963 and 2007. No 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Year 1966 1969 1974 1979 1983 1988 1992 1997 2002 2007 Name of the MP Abdi Nur Ali Hajj Ibrahim Ali Abdullahi Abdi Noor Ahmed Khalif Mohamed Ahmed Khalif Mohamed Abdi Ibrahim Takaw Ahmed Khalif Mohamed Adan Keynan Ahmed Khalif & son Ahmed Keynan Clan Ajuran Ajuran Ajuran Degodia Degodia Ajuran Degodia Degodia Degodia Degodia

From 1978, Degodia added violence to their strategies of dislodging Ajuran from the then Wajir West constituency. They sourced renegades of Somali-Ethiopia war (Somali Abo war) who happened to be their own to mount a campaign of nuisance to push out Ajuran. The hired goons started their operation in piecemeal ­ raping, beatings, looting of property, extortion and torturing in Ajuran Manyattas" (letter to the Minister of State, in 1983 attached refers). As a result, Ajuran clan members were forcefully evicted from their traditional grazing areas. As time went by, the stakes were upped and indiscriminate and sometimes sordid killings were carried out. The compromised government officers

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looked the other way and later engaged in empty talks as life continued to be lost. The community could not fight back as they were outgunned and outnumbered. They lacked adequate resource. The community had no links with Somalia and Ethiopia or any power from which to source help unlike the Degodia community. They had no political voices as the sitting MP is from Degodia clan.

A total of 118 persons from the community were murdered, number of death and level of savagery climbing every time. For instance, when six members of Yussuf Osman's family were killed; the women were taken on a six (6) hour trek into wilderness and murder. An infant and a toddler were left by the bodies of their mothers to die or be eaten by wild animals. Barely six days later, six more people were killed. This time, the bodies were burnt beyond recognition. That was 9th February 1984. It is in the light of such reality that the government mounted strong campaign to end the conflict. Every clan was ordered to stop violence or face dire consequences. While the Ajuran duly complied, Degodia leaders failed to control their militia men. The government set in motion disarmament of the two warring clans. The Ajuran community surrendered their guns but the Degodia, led by the then sitting MPs late Hon. Khalif and Abdi Mohamed Sheikh of Wajir West and Wajir East respectively claimed that the Degodia militia could outnumber the government forces and had very sophisticated weaponry and thus could not be combated or controlled. The leaders were asked to put their claims on paper. These horrible incidents and dangerous claim forced the government to take action against Degodia community members. Subsequently, on 10th February 1984, a string of events culminating in the Wagalla massacre took off in earnest.

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The table below shows the killings inflicted on Ajuran community by the Degodia militia men prior to the Wagalla incident: Year Ajuran killed by Degodia militia men and property lost while government dilly dallied. 1982 1983 An Ajuran man and his son were killed at Bas Lencha. 10 persons attending wedding ceremony were tied together and killed near Ajawa location 1. Maalim Derow Abdille 2. Bashey Ibrahim Ali 3. Abdinur Muhumed Yusuf 4. Yusuf Adan Osman 5. Muhumed Abdi Muhumed 6. Kunow Derow Yusuf 7. Muhumed Abdi 8. Abdi Hussein Abdirahman 9. Muktar Maalim Mahmoud Hassan Derow Ali One person was killed at Qalqalch Tura in Griftu 1. Abdikarim Shunu

1983

1st September, Gurar was invaded and enormous property lost. 100 camel, 31 1983 donkeys, 2350 cattle th 4 September, 13 people were killed at Godoma and many animals driven away. 700 heads of camel and 2000 cattle. Those killed were:1983 700 heads of cattle and 2000 cattle. The persons killed are:1. Shariff Ali Osman 2. Bare Osman Abikar 3. Salat Yarrow Abdinur 4. Mohamed Ali Golicha 5. Abdiwahid Amin Hamate 6. Ibrahim Abikar Hassan 7. Osman Adan Hobay 8. Abdi Osman Salat 9. Bishar Mohamed abikar 10. Jalafow Abdirahman Adow 11. Abdullahi Omar Hussein 12. Osman Abdi Roba 13. Ibrahim Abdi Jirmo 1983 Maalim Abdirahman was killed - Ganyure 1984 Yusuf Ali Omar and 6 others were killed at Griftu Page 7 of 14

1984

3rd Feb. 1984

Unsule, korondille, Buna, Hogan Tira and leysayu areas were invaded and 17 people killed. 1. Sheikh Hussein Takaw 2. Huria Ibrahim Omar 3. Jellefow Abdirahman Adow 4. Abdullahi Abdinur Subow 5. Fatuma Ibrahim Hassan 6. Jelley Nunow Issack 7. Adan Salat Adow 8. Ali Matkheir Madey 9. Hussein Osman Salat 10. Ambia Abdille 11. Isha Bulle Mohamud 12. Abdi Maow Abdille 13. Bishar Yussuf Abdi 14. Hussein Ibrahim Abdi 15. Osman Garar 16. Mohamednur Ali (John) 17. Abdullahi Abdille Yusuf Osman Issack, family and a total 6 person were killed at Eldas area.

1984 9thFeb. 1984

An AP officer was killed in Eldas. 1. Gedi Golo 6 persons; one man and five women were killed at Mado near Griftu Pregnant mother was stabbed on the stomach, the kid removed and placed on the mother's breast. The persons murdered are:1. Abdia Huka 2. Habiba Maalim 3. Hassan Mohamed 4. Mumina Hassan Omar 5. Dakane Ibrahim Huka 6. Tume Ido

We, the Ajuran community, are not winners of Wagalla massacre as Mr. Abdi Sheikh (the author of Blood on the Run Way) wants the world to believe. On contrary, we abhor the massacre and condemn it in the strongest terms possible but were relieved that wanton killing of our people ended with that operation. It is very unfortunate for the elites this Page 8 of 14

community to make such callous statement, opening old wounds, planting seed discord and clan hatred in the hearts of the future generations. Such reckless statement and mindless actions precipitated that horrible incident in the first place.

After Wagalla incident, there was relative peace in the region lasting five years. Between 1988 and 1992, Wajir West parliamentary seat was held by Abdi Ibrahim Takaw, an Ajuran. Those were five peaceful years for people of Wajir West constituency. In 1992, another bloody conflict broke out in Wajir district. Instructively, this happened with the ascending to Wajir West parliamentary seat by late Hon. Ahmed Khalif through stolen election. So when the Ajuran community maintain that clan clashes in former Wajir West has its cause in the Degodia annexation quest: that is not allegation; that is verifiable fact! Below is chronology of the events that occurred in this particular period. Date Dec 1992 Incident Ali Abdi Hussein was killed at Lag-boqol 10,000 herds of cattle, sheep and goats were driven away by Degodia bandits. 3 children looking after animals were killed at Kalkacha in Ganyure. One man was injured at Griftu Over 5000 herds of cattle were driven away A man named Ahmed Komba was killed at Wagalla Two girls were killed at Griftu Over 3800 animals was driven away Abdi Gebero and his family killed at Arbo A total of three persons 11 persons were brutally murdered at Ganyure. A chief and his family and ex-chief and his family Two women killed at the outskirts of Barwaqo location. Mohamed Nur Alo killed in Barwaqo village At burial place where the two women previously killed were being buried. Page 9 of 14

28th Dec 1992 1993 1993 1993 1993 1993 1993 1993

1993 1993

1993

14 April 1994 8thSeptember 2001

Abdi Kontoma formerly police sergeant killed at Laheley The following areas; Harade, Chibder, Barbarisa and Mocho were invaded and 14 persons killed. 1. Elmi Adan Maalim 2. Salat Hassan Adan 3. Ali Ibrahim Kassim 4. Ali Hassan Mohamed 5. Maalim Abdinur Sheikh Salat 6. Mohamud Abdi Omar 7. Osman Abikar Bashir 8. Bulle Mohamud Hassan 9. Abdi Adan Abdille 10. Omar Bishar Adan 11. Ibrahim Abdi Garraw 12. Ibrahim Ali Osman 13. Hassan Madey (Horor) 14. Ore Subow Two men killed at Laheley 1. Ilo Abdi Kula 2. Son of Hussein Ali Kule. Hassan Abdullahi Garena killed Over 5000 herds of cattle driven away Diniqu was invaded two people were killed, two others injured and substantial numbers of animals driven away 9000 heads of camel and 5000 cattle.

THE PLAGUE OF MARGINALIZATION. The Ajuran community has suffered untold and systematic

marginalization, sadly in independent Kenya where due rights and services were bought and sold as a commodity in the Market place. Unlike the Degodia who are recent immigrants looking for ways to secure foothold, the Ajuran community had confidence about their status as citizens and never thought it wise or necessary to pay bribe to access their rights. Unfortunately, they realized very late that those rights and services are for sale to the highest bidder and that government offices were auction houses.

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Consequently, we were pushed to smaller and smaller acreage every time. Poverty became our lot as access to resources and services were curtailed by corruption perpetuated by self-seeking bureaucrats and illegal immigrants seeking foothold for any price tag. Gerrymandering: when the former Wajir West constituency was subdivided, the population of Ajuran was divided rendering them nonviable politically. The action may have afforded the Ajuran

community a constituency of their own but came with a heavy price. The Ajuran lost the prime grazing land and on the basis of having a constituency lost share of resources in Wajir West although they still reside in the constituency. In Wajir North, the Ajuran community are under assault. Preying on their diminished numbers resulting from subdivision of former Wajir West, the Garreh community are mark timing with a command post in Danaba and Qadaduma while the Degodia community have continued their annexation quest using Masalale and Batula outposts as launching pad. Apparently, we are yet to see the last of monkey business against the Ajuran community. The Ajuran community has pastoralism as the mainstay of their economy. With the loss of the prime grazing land, this source of livelihood has continued to dwindle both in terms of quality and quantity. Today, families arrive in the peri-urban centre every season as destitute or in possession of nonviable stock that only served as bane of their life. In cahoots with corrupt bureaucrats in provincial administration, the Degodia community has set up settlement, complete with administrative officials like chiefs, for every subclan of the Degodia community. Such subclan not only monopolized resources but have indicated that Ajuran are persona non grata in these areas. In 2001, one person was killed and one seriously injured at Arbajahan. Two years later, in 2003, four Ajuran Page 11 of 14

herders were killed at Adhe-Bohol. These are Ajuran persons passing through these areas trying to access livestock market in Isiolo town. These subclans have characteristically changed the original names of this location to erase evidence of Ajuran connection. This is reminiscent of the Europeans settlers' naming of prime agricultural highlands of Kenya, the white highlands. Instances of such larceny are documented elsewhere in this same report. The Ajuran community have always missed out on senior government position. The community parliamentary representative has never been appointed to assistant ministerial position let alone cabinet position. The community has never had one of its own appointed PS or PC, yet the community had eligible persons. The same is true for the community with regards to parastatal and constitutional commission position.

Consequently, the community has no way of contributing to important national debate or even highlighting their plight in a meaningful way. The forum for the creation of county government held in Garissa recently is a good example. Of the 12 members from Wajir West constituency that attended the meeting, all are from Degodia community.

The areas Ajuran community reside have no good roads, no power supply, no boreholes, no good health infrastructure and school performance is among the worst. For this reason, the Ajuran community are second in poverty rating after the people of Ganze (Government statistics and report). This is the sum total of a wanton neglect. In a nutshell, the community is a people under siege partially, politically, economically, culturally and existentially.

The table below shows instances of distort and dispossess intrigues in the Degodia community's expansionist scheme of distributing of Wajir West Page 12 of 14

land amongst its sub-clans while changing the old names of the areas to justify ownership.

No Old Name 1 Dololo qalqalcha 2 3 4 5 Boji Adhe Arbo Mirgo hallo Qoti-sala

New Name Fatuma Noor Adhe Bohol Kukaale Tula-Tula Shanta Abaq

Sub- clan residing there Jibrail Maow Masare Fardanow Rerow Mohamud

Expectations and recommendations to TJRC The community recommends the following as a remedy to the situation: 1. In line with the provisions of the new constitution, resource and opportunity allocation should consider equity, affirmative action and be representative of demographic realities. 2. Special commission to be set up to look into the Ajuran community grievances of displacement, dispossession, marginalization and rights violations and recommend not only measures to ensure level playing field but also suggest appropriate equalisation program. 3. Establishment of social justice system that will allow Ajuran to have access to leadership positions in the government both at local and national level. 4. TJRC has to facilitate reconciliation mission that involves all the clans in the region and with view of developing mechanisms to stave off discrimination on the basis of clan. This is because Degodia community is still pushing expansionist agenda. 5. Although co-existence and sharing national resources is a constitutional requirement, the government should recognise the fact of Wajir West being the Ajuran ancestral land. Page 13 of 14

6. Inclusion of Ajuran in the political appointments in the government. 7. TJRC to read Wagalla issue within the context of clan feuds. The real circumstances that lead to the Wagalla incident be brought to service. 8. Resources from equalisation fund be allocated to development of infrastructure, education, healthcare and poverty alleviation as a positive discrimination measure to assist the community to catch up with others. 9. Ajuran community demands to be compensated for all injustice inflicted on its people by state agency and Degodia militia since it is the duty of the state to protect the life and property of its citizens.

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MEMORANDUM ON PAST INJUSTICES

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