• This criminal network is pushing a convoluted political agenda that will continue to threaten the unity of the vast county.
• The plan is to have an ethnically homogenous electoral base and exclusive land ownership.
The cattle theft and bloodshed we keep witnessing in Baringo county is nothing but a political weapon within the context of a decentralised systems. This partly explains the changing nature of cattle rustlers.
Unlike cattle-rustling of yonder, the last two decades have witnessed a huge shift in the manner in which the raids are executed. The weaponry is sophisticated and even superior to those used by some security agencies.
Cattle rustling used to happen in December as young men, just out of initiation, went raiding for cows to pay bride price. Now, attacks are carried out from January to December.
This criminal network is pushing a convoluted political agenda that will continue to threaten the unity of the vast county. The plan is to have an ethnically homogenous electoral base and exclusive land ownership.
The Tugen and the Il Chamus have borne the brunt of the attacks.
For many years, the Pokot have continued to procure high caliber weapons for one purpose; to attack — kill and steal from their neighbours.
The political leaders, for luck of a better word, have perfected the art of massaging the problem, hence eschewing any desire to find a lasting solution.
As local political leaders trade accusations after every attack, communities are sitting ducks in this devilish game.
The buck stops with the political leaders who seem to have entered into an oath of silence. Leaders from Tiaty never condemn attacks and killings, choosing to hear no evil and see no evil as victims are killed every other day.
Women and children have been killed or injured in a war that has forced thousands into IDP camps in schools.
Baringo Senator Gideon Moi is the chairman of Kanu, a political outfit with deep roots in Tiaty. The constituency is represented in the National Assembly by his political ally and fierce defender, William Kamket.
The Kanu MP was, in early 2014, charged in a Nakuru court for his remarks that spread fears of new attacks.
The leaders don’t like each other’s guts and cannot meet to discuss this perennial problem. The MCAs are no better. All they do is address the media separately something that can never be helpful in finding a lasting solution .
The enmity in the rest of the communities and the Pokot is so raw, it is difficult for elders to sit together for the sake of peace. On March, 28, 2017, Tugen Council of Elders refused to sit in peace talks with their Pokot counterparts until the antagonists are disarmed.
How is it possible to sit with an enemy who killed your family, stole their livestock, burnt their homes and then, to crown it all, he is now occupying your land and that of your neighbours?
Kanu has a huge following in Tiaty. It is the only constituency being represented by a Kanu MP.
The Pokot votes to a man for Kanu and this explains why it is hard for Gideon to effectively admonish the people who support in the county.
The county’s Woman Representative, Gladwel Tungo, is the other Kanu MP and is currently facing strong political currents after reading a press release in March, calling for the impeachment of Deputy President William Ruto.
The reaction was swift with DP’s followers holding a huge demo in Kabarnet Town as they bayed for her blood.
Ruto has a significant influence in the five constituencies in Baringo except for Tiaty for obvious reasons.
With a handful of the people and even fewer sitting politicians in his camp, Gideon isn’t in a position to marshal the numbers for any tangible meeting.
This spells doom to his efforts to bring the county assembly and MPs to a round table for peace talks.
However, as the man soon to be thrust into national political limelight, the Senator should prove that he has the mettle to lead the country.
A sage one said, charity begins at home. Gideon should showcase his leadership skills by putting his house in order.
He is being groomed by the powers that be to play a huge role in Kenya’s national politics.
He has his late father’s leadership rungu handed to him early this year. What is he doing with the rungu if he cannot use it into whipping the county’s leadership into peace talks?