Leaders resolve to end runaway insecurity in pastoralist zones

Sunday September 10 2017

Laikipia Governor Ndiritu Muriithi (centre), Laikipia Senator John Kinyua (left) and Samburu West MP Naisula Lesuuda address the media after attending a security meeting with leaders from Samburu, Laikipia and Baringo counties in Nyahururu town on August 23. Elected leaders from the same counties also met on September 10, 2017 in Nyahururu. PHOTO | STEVEN NJUGUNA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Laikipia Governor Ndiritu Muriithi (centre), Laikipia Senator John Kinyua (left) and Samburu West MP Naisula Lesuuda address the media after attending a security meeting with leaders from Samburu, Laikipia and Baringo counties in Nyahururu town on August 23. Elected leaders from the same counties also met on September 10, 2017 in Nyahururu. PHOTO | STEVEN NJUGUNA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By STEVE NJUGUNA
More by this Author

Elected leaders from Laikipia, Baringo, Samburu and West Pokot counties have resolved to bring stability to the volatile region.

In a daylong closed-door meeting on Sunday that was convened by Laikipia Governor Ndiritu Muriithi in Nyahururu town, the leaders decried the fact that insecurity in the counties has hindered development.

The leaders have agreed to form several committees to address relevant and practical issues to end insecurity in their counties.

Speaking after the meeting, Governor Muriithi said a practical and relevant approach is required to end the persistent menace.

The meeting was dubbed the ‘Amaya Triangle Initiative.’

Governor Muriithi  said security is key to rapid, meaningful and social economic development in the four counties.

Mr Muriithi said the leaders resolved to involve the public at the grassroots in all approaches to ensure a permanent solution to peace is  found.

GIDEON MOI

Earlier, Baringo Senator Gideon Moi who also attended the meeting said that it was important for the national government to engage local leaders in addressing the security problem in the counties.

“What the national government is doing is not always right, there is need to fully engage local leaders at the counties in solving the problem,” Mr Moi said, adding that as leaders they are committed to ensuring that peace prevails in their respective area.

While stressing on the need to respect the rule of law, the Baringo senator proposed that the locals be given alternative ways to improve their lives.

Among those who attended the Saturday meeting included West Pokot Governor John Loyangapuo, senators Samuel Poghisio (West Pokot), John Kinyua (Laikipia), Women Reps Maison Leshomo (Samburu) and Catherine Waruguru (Laikipia).

Others were MPs Patrick Mariru (Laikipia West), Naisula Lesuuda (Samburu West), Alois Lentoimanga (Samburu North) and a number of ward representatives from the four counties.

County commissioners from the four counties and other top security agencies also attended the meeting.

MILITARY PERSONNEL

The government has deployed military personnel in the counties to mop up illegal guns, drive illegal herders out of private lands and restore security in the areas following increased insecurity in the region blame on bandits.

The deployment of the security officers to the region was ordered by President Uhuru Kenyatta following shooting and injuring of police officers and the killing of Sossian ranch co-owner Tristan Voorspuy In March.

The Head of State ordered for the deployment of the military to the troubled counties of Baringo, Elgeyo Marakwet, Pokot and Laikipia to help police restore law and order.

However, the security operation has been criticised by local people claiming innocent residents were being unnecessarily harassed by the security forces.

More than 20 security officers including OCPD of Laikipia West Merengo Muherai have been shot at and seriously injured while evicting illegal herders from private ranches since the operation was ordered.

WOUNDED

Mr Melengo Muherai was shot and seriously wounded on February 8 while driving away illegal grazers at Kifuku ranch, Rumuruti town, in Laikipia West.

On March 7, Sossian ranch co-owner Mr Voorspuy was shot dead by illegal grazers who had invaded his ranch. Mr Voorspuy, a British ex-soldier, was inspecting a section of his lodge that had been burnt down by the herders the previous day.

In the same month the government gazetted seven zones in Laikipia County as dangerous and disturbed.