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EDITORIAL: Hon. Tiyah Galgalo is our impeccable nominee as a Member of the National Land Commission

Hon. Tiyah Galgalo Ali


Being a leader is one of most difficult and rewarding positions globally. Leadership is a quality hidden in the personality of a human being. Human personality is very complex and it is very difficult to grade individuals according to one’s personality but we are absolutely certain Hon. Tiyah is first among equals. Leadership, on the other hand, depends on the organic structure of the personality which includes experience, skill, responsibility, intelligence, power of organizing people and social interaction.

Hon Tiyah had stood tall and cut niche both in geo-political landscape of our nation. She had heart bigger than her body for our communal prosperity.

Clocking this far on her own wasn’t just a child play. She had already weathered many storms and negotiated several hurdles successfully to the chagrin of numerous quarters.

Northern Kenya whose economic mainstay is nomadic pastoralism have been marginalised because of punitive laws, skewed public policy, official discrimination, political patronage and institutional malpractices of successive governments.

In North Kenya, various pieces of legislations placed an emergency rule on the region from 1966 until their repeal 1997, courtesy of the famous Inter Parties Parliamentary Group (IPPG) resolutions.


The 1965 Sessional Paper No. 10 consigned most of the ‘unproductive’ arid and semi-arid regions into economic oblivion when it declared that government prioritises development and investment in ‘high potential regions’, in a deceptive attempt to create political equality, equal opportunities and social justice.Instead, it bred class formation and blossomed regional inequalities with glaring disparities in human development indices.

The consequences of such skewed socio-economic policies and development blueprints formed the basis for the pursuit of devolution to address inequitable resource allocation.
The Constitution profoundly alludes to this systemic challenge when it regulated resource allocation at all levels of government, and in every category.

Our Constitution recognised and defined marginalised groups and communities in the society, and marginalised regions for which it specifically created the equalisation fund. For instance, its definition of marginalised communities includes “pastoralists, nomadic or settled, that because of its relative geographic isolation experienced only marginal participation in the integrated social and economic life of the country as a whole”.

To address these policy failures, Article 56 requires that ‘the state shall put in place affirmative action programmes designed to ensure minorities and marginalised groups participate in and area represented in governance and other spheres of life, are provided special opportunities in educational and economic fields, access to employment, water, health services and infrastructure.’

Marginalisation driven by discrimination is also addressed in Article 27(6) which requires that “the state shall take legislative and other measures, including affirmative action programmes and policies designed to redress any disadvantage suffered by individuals or groups because of past discrimination.”

The quest to reduce inequalities perpetuated by institutionally sanctioned marginalisation goes on not only in Kenya but globally. Like everyone else, women pastoralists wants a future! They are not lesser humans. We do not wish to condone animal farm whatsoever!


Hon. Tiyah’s unexpected technical hitch with KRA is not an isolated case. We have heard of other nominees overwhelmed by more complex issues than what Hon. Tiyah was subjected to by the very same tax collector.

With the introduction of electronic filing of tax returns, high tax compliance cost should no longer be a factor hindering tax compliance. However, it is an open secret that KRA continues to face systemic hitch and capacity challenges making it difficult for it to keep a tab on taxpayers due to the large informal sectors as reported in 2017 Economic Survey.

While the Constitution of Kenya 2010 has very progressive benchmarks for ensuring participation in decision making, especially for women, who for a long time have been excluded from these processes, the pastoralists women in Northern Kenya remains largely invisible for far too long.

Lets reach out to all legislators, pastoralists parliamentary group, galaxy of parties in politburo that came into place in the wake of ‘handshake’, our top-notch government officials and professionals so that this life time opportunity for the community may not slip through our fingers.

Also read:  The Process of Land Adjudication in Kenya

Hon. Tiyah needs our collective prayer, push and voices to see her through this final jump.

On behalf of esteemed Borana Council of Elders, Professionals and pastoralists community from Tana River, Isiolo and Marsabit Counties we humbly petition the National Assembly to support and endorse the nomination of Hon. Tiyah Galgalo as a member of the National Land Commission. 

We humbly seek indulgence of the August House (National Assembly) to heed to our prayer.

God will see her through!


About Whispers from the North

Whispers from the North is an online platform that appreciates the ecological, cultural and socio-economic diversities of Northern Kenya. We also acknowledge that the lives of the communities of northern Kenya has been shaped by a number of intrinsic and extrinsic factors which have led to complex challenge that calls for a multifaceted approach.

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