RISE IN ATTACKS

Bullet for bullet: Official orders armed N Rift bandits killed

Baringo county is home of the Tugens, Pokots and Ilchamus pastoralists

In Summary

• More than 6,000 illegal firearms are still in the hands of the residents in the entire North Rift region. 

• Bandits have heightened attacks and killed six people so far, injuring three and displacing hundreds of Baringo residents. 

Rift Valley Regional Commissioner Gorge Natembeya addresses the media after a closed-door security meeting at the Kenya School of Government in Kabarnet town, Baringo , on Thursday, April 16.
SHOOT TO KILL: Rift Valley Regional Commissioner Gorge Natembeya addresses the media after a closed-door security meeting at the Kenya School of Government in Kabarnet town, Baringo , on Thursday, April 16.
Image: JOSEPH KANGOGO

Rift Valley Regional Commissioner Gorge Natembeya has issued a shoot-to-kill order against armed bandits in North Rift.

Natembeya said whoever holds an illegal firearm and uses it to kill an innocent person has no right to live.

“Firearm for firearm. You kill a Kenyan with your gun then expect also to be killed. Bandits are not the only ones who know how to kill,” he said.

The administrator was addressing reporters after a closed-door security meeting at the Kenya School of Government in Kabarnet town, Baringo county, on Thursday.

“We are here today to restore law and order and ensure our people are living peacefully in their homes without fearing attacks,” Natembeya said in the company of Baringo commissioner Henry Wafula and regional Criminal Investigative Officer Festus Malinge.

His order comes at a time when armed bandits have heightened attacks and killed six people, injured three and displaced hundreds of residents in Baringo.

The county is inhabited by the warring Tugend, Pokotd and Ilchamus, who are all pastoralists.

More than 800 people including children, expectant women and the elderly have been displaced in the volatile parts of Chemoe, Yatya, Kagir and Ngratuko in Baringo North and Arabal, Kasiela and Sirata in Baringo South.

“People are not supposed to lose their lives and that is why we are here to restore law and order,” Natembeya said.

He warned those planning the raids that they will not like what will happen to them.

“Of course I will not share more information of our strategies here in the media because the criminal are listening,” he said.

He urged the people and communities to reject the bandits and provide police with information on their hideouts.

He further called on everyone to play their role with the objective of restoring peace.

“All of us must read from the same page as partners in this mission to fight insecurity.”

He said it has been difficult to prosecute bandits in the Kenyan courts because the affected people failed to present themselves as witnesses if a bandit is arrested.

It is believed over 6,000 illegal firearms are still in the hands of the residents in the entire North Rift region.

Edited by R.Wamochie 

Pokot warriors armed with swords and sticks at Nginyang, Tiaty Sub-county on March 2019.
Pokot warriors armed with swords and sticks at Nginyang, Tiaty Sub-county on March 2019.
Image: JOSEPH KANGOGO