- More than 30 deaths in four months.
- Members of the gang kill innocent people and often steal nothing.
Interior CSFred Matiang’i yesterday declared a massive security operation in Kakamega to eliminate a terror gang that has killed more than 30 people in less than four months.
He announced the deployment of more police officers, including the elite General Service Unit, to crush the gang.
In many cases, nothing was stolen, the purpose appeared to be inspiring terror 'for kicks' and political aims. Politicians are expected to be interrogated.
Matiang'i addressed residents of Matungu at Bulimbo girls’ secondary school in Matungu, which has borne the brunt of the murders.
He said police arrested suspected leaders of the gang calling itself 42 Brothers on Wednesday night.
“One is a prison escapee serving a 20-year jail term and he has been co-ordinating insecurity from Nairobi," Matiang'i said.
He asked those in hiding to surrender "or prepare to meet us one on one because they have nowhere to hide,” he said.
The Interior boss said security would be changed if needed and more officers, including the elite GSU, would be deployed "to end this senseless killing once and for all,” he said.
“We’ve come here with the entire security team because we want to end the suffering of our people. We’re not leaving anything for tomorrow. We are going to deal with everything today,” he said.
He was joined by Police IG Hillary Mutiambai, Western regional police commander Rashid Yakub, Regional Commissioner Anne Ng’etich, Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya and Matungu MP Justus Murunga.
He held a closed-door meeting with senior security chiefs at Ng’etich’s office before addressing the public at several stops before the main meeting at Matungu DC’s office.
Matiang’i said that the gang will be eliminated the same way security officers crushed the gang terrorising Mt Elgon residents last year.
“I assure the public this situation will end and they never again be disturbed by criminals," Matiang'i said.
On Monday, Kakamega county commissioner Adbirasak Jaldesa said three politicians were under investigation over alleged links with the gang.
He said they will be summoned to record statements when detectives deem fit.
Oparanya said that those behind the killings across the county were well known and their days were numbered.
In Matungu the gang has killed 14 people in two months.
The gang is also believed to have been behind the killing in March of six watchmen at Kilingili market and two others at Milwanda market in Khwisero the same month.
(Edited by V. Graham)