Residents flee their homes after attacks

Peace and Justice Center (PJC) Kitale project officer has condemned the repeated attacks in Counties the North Rift regions
Peace and Justice Center (PJC) Kitale project officer has condemned the repeated attacks in Counties the North Rift regions

About 2000 people living at the border of West Pokot and Elgeyo Marakwet Counties have vacated their homes after about 70 houses were burnt by bandits from the neighbouring community in what is believed to be a retaliatory attack on Friday.

Learning is also paralyzed in Kamelei location Pokot South Sub County in West Pokot after seven schools were closed following the attack as thousand fled their homes fearing for their lives.

Confirming the incident, Pokot South deputy County Commissioner Hezron Nyamberi said tension has mounted along the border following the frequent attacks as police officers have been deployed at the border to calm the situation.

He said on Friday 5.00 am a group of bandits crossed the border to steal livestock and four people were injured during the raid.

“A teacher was also injured after being shot in the leg, he was taken to Kapenguria referral hospital where he is recuperating,” he said.

He added that at 7:00 am on the that Friday a group of bandits came for a retaliatory attack and started torching people’s houses.

Some of the affected areas include Ptsonu, Kapusheni, Serena and Kamelei as residents have moved on the lower side of Tapach ward.

He added that a number of schools including Kapushen, Kamelei, Ptsonu, Sopowen, Tarak, Tapach, Pialang and Kamonges primary schools have been closed. Also, Kamelei and Tapach secondary schools have also been closed as parents moved with their children.

“Women and children are the ones most affected but we have deployed enough security personnel who are patrolling the area day and night. By Tuesday I assure the residents they’ll be back in their homes after a peace meeting on Monday,” he said.

He added that politics has been a big obstacle in the fight against banditry attacks as he cautioned politicians from inciting locals.

He added that the government will supply relief food to the affected families as they do an assessment with the help of Kenya Red Cross society on how they will help residents whose houses have been razed.

He urged the government to deploy an anti-stock theft unit along the border to help beef up security citing that the bandits are hiding in the forest.