Market stalls beside the railway line in Kibera                Photo taken in Feb/09 by Amnesty International

More than 11,000 families are at risk of being forcibly evicted from their homes along the railway line of the Kibera settlement in Nairobi, Kenya.  Believed to be the largest informal settlement in Kenya (and often called one of the “largest urban slums in Africa”), Kibera is home to an estimated one million people, many of whom live and work in precarious conditions along the railway line that cuts through the community.

Last week in Dakar at the 2011 World Social Forum, we caught up with Samson Ochieng Ooko – one of the leaders of the Ngazi Ya Chini (Railway Dwellers Federation of Kenya), a movement that has been fighting the unlawful evictions and advocating for fair treatment of the Kibera communities.

In this conversation, Samson outlines the communities’ main demand: a fair and adequate relocation plan to prevent families from losing their livelihoods as a result of the eviction.  As these testimonies collected by Amnesty International show, too often a forced eviction does not only mean losing one’s home, but also one’s source of income and place of work.  In our interview, Samson also talks about what the international community can do to support the fight of these families on the ground:

Watch more interviews with activists fighting forced evictions and learn more about WITNESS’ global campaign on Forced Evictions in the Name of Development here:

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