The arrival of the colonialists in Africa in the late 1800s and the beginning of the 1900s ushered in new and devastating century-long governance and economic systems that were not in tandem with the indigenous systems. From the advent of colonialism till today, this has characterized African colonial history as one that has infringed on the rights of the Native communities in Kenya. The most affected indigenous community was the Maasai, who prior to that roamed the plains of East Africa’ in search of pastures and water for their livestock. The boundaries of their territories as described by the British followed the line of the Great Rift Valley from Kenya to Tanzania. The demand for land for settlement by new settler communities made the Imperial British government to impose laws on the Natives with the objective of expropriating the most arable land, especially in the central Rift Valley, which was mostly inhabited by the Maasai and the Kalenjin and had a cool climate and absence of large population over large areas, and in some parts of Central Kenya (Morgan, 1960).
- Indigenous People
- Rift Valley
- Political Elite
- Trust Land
- East Coast Fever
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© 2016 Ben Ole Koissaba
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Koissaba, B.O. (2016). Elusive Justice: The Maasai Contestation of Land Appropriation in Kenya: A Historical and Contemporary Perspective. In: Kithinji, M.M., Koster, M.M., Rotich, J.P. (eds) Kenya After 50. African Histories and Modernities. Palgrave Macmillan, New York. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137558305_9
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