North Rift bosses urge Matiang'i to end Kerio banditry

Noreb bosses say roads, irrigation will open region, end shortage of pasture, water

In Summary

• County bosses said they must be involved in security, which should not be left to the national government alone. They cite the Kerio Valley and Laikipia.

• They cite the need for roads, irrigation, schools, electricity and development to open the region, provide jobs, end competition for water and pasture.

Governor Jackson Mandago of Uasin Gishu rides to a function at Moiben on September 14.
GO MANDAGO: Governor Jackson Mandago of Uasin Gishu rides to a function at Moiben on September 14.

North Rift governors have petitioned Interior CS Fred Matiang'i proposing development and county involvement to end violence in the Kerio Valley.

The government already has launched a military-backed operation to end insecurity in Laikipia county.

The county chiefs, through the North Rift Economic Bloc (Noreb), said counties must be involved. They listed projects, including road and irrigation, they want implemented in Kerio.

They also called for more schools and electricity connections in main markets so residents can do business and dissuade youth from banditry.

They want the government to implement long-term measures to end insecurity in Laikipia and the Kerio Valley.

Governor Jackson Mandago of Uasin Gishu said the government must fully include counties in solving security problems. 

Mandago is the chairman of Noreb.

He called for stern action against politicians who incite Laikipia residents to violence over land ownership, water and pasture.

He said the County Policing Authority should have legal support to back the national government in security matters.

“The time has come when we must think about insecurity holistically, instead of being reactive and launching security operations that can't solve the problem," Mandago said. He was speaking in his Eldoret office on Friday.

The government's short-term security solutions can't work, the governor said.

“We have written to the Interior ministry and even discussed our proposals with them to better deal with insecurity challenges," Mandago said

"There is no way the ministry can run security matters without involving counties that may have simple solutions to some  insecurity challenges," he said

"Going forward, counties must have a role in security matters. This issue would have been addressed with the County Police Oversight Authority that was shelved and never operationalised," the county boss said

Soy MP Caleb Kositany said leaders in Laikipia must lead from the front in restoring peace in Laikipia. He said inciters must be punished to end violence and banditry.

(Edited by V. Graham)