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Mortgaging the AncestorsIdeologies of Attachment in Africa$
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Parker Shipton

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780300116021

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300116021.001.0001

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Bigger than Law

Bigger than Law

Land and Constitutionalism

(p.201) Chapter 9 Bigger than Law
Mortgaging the Ancestors

Parker Shipton

Yale University Press

This chapter looks at how Kenya has dealt with and addressed issues about land, humans, and the connections between them—testing how far the nation's principles and aspirations about such things can be set into official language. It looks at the arguments that ensued due to concerns about colonial legacy, farmer-herder friction, clan body burial, or widow inheritance. It looks at the change in regime in 2003 from the government of Daniel arap Moi to that of Mwai Kibaki as president, and how this change brought about discussions and rethinking about the nature, evolution, design, and effects of land tenure. This was reviewed merely as part of a broader process of re-imagining the constitution and government of the nation. Charles Njonjo saw the three-year commission of enquiry into the land laws of Kenya, and concluded that a new national land policy was in serious need. This chapter ends by examining the particular case of Kenya's process of procuring a new land policy.

Keywords:   colonial legacy, farmer-herder friction, clan body burial, widow inheritance, Daniel arap Moi, Mwai Kibaki, land tenure, Charles Njonjo, land laws of Kenya, new land policy

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