10 January 2013

Kenya: One Killed, 3,000 Displaced By Bandit Attack

Photo: Capital FM/UN photo
Armed herder (file photo): One person has been killed and over 3,000 displaced by bandits in Marigat, Baringo county.

One person was shot dead and another wounded in renewed clashes between two communities in Marigat district, Baringo county.

Tension is high at villages in Arabal area which was attacked by heavily armed bandits causing more than 3,000 people to flee from their homes for safety.

The villagers have been unable to retrieve the body of the man who was shot dead by the attackers. Human rights activist Harun Mpaka, who visited the affected areas, has asked the government to beef up security in the area.

"The situation here is critical and unless something is done we are likely to lose many people in revenge attacks," said Mpaka. Those who fled from their homes were camping at churches and schools.

The bandits killed a man at his house near Arabal Primary School. Those who fled are camping at Muchongoi Parish and in Laikipia district.

Marigat DC Saul Muyaywa said they have beefed up security in the area and that more than 300 additional police officers have been sent to the region. The area has been hit by frequent cattle rustling raids.

"We have taken measures to contain the situation and we have already deployed more officers on the ground," said Muyaywa. However, residents claimed the provincial administration was not taking the insecurity situation seriously.

Meanwhile, some of the 14 schools destroyed by floods and mudslides in Keiyo and Baringo are yet to reopen Keiyo South DC Arthur Bunde however said the government has deployed engineers to asses the damage and repairs were already going on.

More than 400 children were affected and are yet to report to their schools. "Parents should not be worried because we are taking measures to ensure learning resumes in all schools like in other parts of the country," said Bunde.

In Baringo, schools affected include Sintaan, Loropil, Salabani, Leso and Ilingarau primary schools and Ngambo Secondary School. The floods and mudslides in Kerio Valley killed 20 people and displaced more than 1,500 others, who are currently camping at schools and churches on the highland side of Keiyo district.

Bunde said the displaced families will not be allowed to return to the risky areas until the situation is safe. "We are still assessing the situation before we allow people to return to the affected areas," said Bunde.

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