JUSTICE

Raila joins Meru leaders in seeking justice for 7 killed by bandits

Leaders demanded justice for the seven and immediate arrests of the culprits.

In Summary

• The community tabled a petition addressed to interior CS Fred Matiang'i and Governor Murungi following the killings at Mweronkoro on January 5, in respect to security improvement.

Raila Odinga in Meru where he joined local leaders in seeking justice for 7 killed by bandits at their burial on January 12, 2022.
Raila Odinga in Meru where he joined local leaders in seeking justice for 7 killed by bandits at their burial on January 12, 2022.
Image: COURTESY

ODM leader Raila Odinga on Wednesday joined Meru leaders in condemning and seeking justice for seven Meru residents killed by bandits.

Raila, Agriculture CS Peter Munya, Meru governor Kiraitu Murungi attended the requiem mass and subsequent burial of seven Meru residents killed in banditry attacks at Mweronkoro in Matabithi Tigania East Meru.

Others present include Senator James Orengo, MPs Gichunge Kabeabea (Tigania East), John Mutunga (Tigania West) Maoka Maore (Igembe North), Kubai Kiringo (Igembe Central), Meru majority leader Victor Karithi and Kirima Ngushine (Imenti Central) as well Njuri Ncheke Council of elders.

The leaders demanded justice for the seven and immediate arrests of the culprits.

Raila said it is the responsibility of the police to track down criminals and charge them accordingly.

"We came here in sadness, I postponed my other activities to mourn with you. We were shocked by this criminal act. Life is very important and no one is allowed to take someone's life," Raila said.

Raila added "on the problem about land, we propose the battalion to leave the land that belongs to residents. We should champion for peaceful coexistence and that is the reason we are advocating for economic liberation".

Raila also drummed up support for his August 9 Presidential bid saying he is the best bet for the country.

"I call upon the youth to support my presidential bid for the third liberation. With Baba care, every Kenyan who is sick will get free treatment. Every vulnerable family to get Sh 6K. I will seal all the corruption loopholes used to steal public money and channel it to monthly stipends," Raila said.

Munya on his part said criminals must face the law adding that there is no dispute on the boundary between Isiolo and Meru counties.

"I condole with all families and saddened by the criminal act which is not the first one to have taken lives of locals. The land here has turned to be the bone of contention, the reason why there are no buildings around is that people cannot live here due to insecurity," he said.

Munya noted that a special team will be on the ground soonest possible to conduct land demarcation and issue title deeds.

He said the President instructed the tussle between the 78 Battalion and area communities to be resolved amicably.

Kiraitu supported residents' demand that people get their title deeds.

He also thanked Raila for finding time to mourn with residents.

"I never knew Raila would pass his condolences in person and this shows a friend in need is a friend indeed. I urge you Raila to take the community's memorandum to your friend President Uhuru Kenyatta," Kiraitu said.

He added, "we have a problem with the military who want to grab residents Land. Let them stop claiming our land and I will issue them a good land near Kula Mawe but on condition, they will provide a buffer zone".

Siaya Senator Orengo urged MPs to table a motion to the parliament to unravel what caused the incident.

He said the land law should also involve the national land commission as well as the county government because no one is above the law.

"What we speak is very important. And it is not what you want to mean but what people understand. We are in a new Kenya and Itawezekana. Do not make any mistakes."

MP Maore said the neighbours should not construe calmness for fear.

"I ask the Meru assembly to pass a resolution motion to completely ban herders from Isiolo County. We have been attacked by people who claim they do not know where the border is," Maore said.

Deputy Inspector General of Police Edward Mbugua urged leaders to stop inciting residents but rather follow the right procedure to claim back guns withdrawn from NPR officers.

"Follow the right channel and we shall arm the recommended people who must be vetted. The earlier you bring people of integrity and good calibre, we will immediately issue them with guns," Mbugua said.

The community tabled a petition addressed to interior CS Fred Matiang'i and Governor Murungi following the killings at Mweronkoro on January 5, in respect to security improvement.

They requested the government to immediately expedite arrests of the criminals who killed the seven.