BANDITRY ATTACKS

Security teams patrol volatile Kerio Valley, curfew to expire 2 days to polls

Residents are piling pressure on the government to lift the curfew ahead of the election

In Summary

• Interior CS Fred Matiang'i is expected to announce if the dusk-to-dawn curfew he imposed in the region will be extended or lifted.

• The curfew will expire on August 7, two days to the polls.

Interior CS Fred Matiang'i when he visited Tot police station on June 8, 2022
Interior CS Fred Matiang'i when he visited Tot police station on June 8, 2022
Image: BY MATHEWS NDANYI

Security teams, including GSU, have increased patrols in Kerio Valley region to avert banditry attacks ahead of the election.

Heavily armed security teams have been seen patrolling areas along the borders of Elgeyo Marakwet, West Pokot and Baringo counties.

Interior CS Fred Matiang'i is expected to announce if the dusk-to-dawn curfew he imposed in the region will be extended or lifted.

The curfew will expire on August 7, two days to the polls.

Rift Valley regional commissioner Maalim Mohammed said security has been enhanced in all areas of the valley.

“We will continue to review the situation and ensure we do not face insecurity challenges again, especially during the elections period,” he said.

Residents of Kerio Valley are piling pressure on the government to lift the curfew ahead of the polls.

Community representatives led by Donald Kibet said they had petitioned CS Matiang'i to lift the curfew before the polls.

“We are happy with the security measures so far put in place but we urge that the curfew be lifted so that our people will be free to participate in the election process,” Kibet said.

Leaders in the region, including MPs William Kisang of Marakwet West and Bowen Kangogo of Marakwet East, say the curfew has been useful in ensuring peace is restored in the region.

Kisang and Kangogo want residents allowed to freely participate in the polls despite the tough security measures.

So far no serious attacks have been reported in the region since June 8 when Matiang'i visited the region and put in place security measures to stop banditry.

Presidential candidates Raila Odinga of Azimio and William Ruto of UDA have both campaigned in the region, pledging to use all means possible to wipe out banditry attacks.

During the presidential debate, Ruto criticised the withdrawal of police reservists from the affected counties, saying the move was politically motivated.

Elgeyo Marakwet Governor Alex Tolgos and his West Pokot counterpart John Lonyangapuo have also expressed satisfaction with measures put in place to restore security in affected areas.

“We have asked the Interior ministry to deploy additional security teams so that as we head to the elections our people will be safe,” Tolgos said.

 

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