Victims of banditry, famine in Tiaty receive relief food

Sunday March 19 2017

Residents of Baringo County displaced by banditry receive food

Residents of Baringo County displaced by banditry receive food from Kenyan athletes on March 19, 2017. PHOTO | GERALD BWISA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By GERALD BWISA
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By BERNARD ROTICH
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Athletes have donated food to families being hit by a wave of hunger and insecurity in Tiaty, Baringo County as an operation to rout bandits continues.

They gave the displaced locals maize, bottled water, cooking oil and snacks

Asbel Kiprop, 1500m World Champion, said they sympathised with the plight of their fellow countrymen and decided to act.

“It’s evident that many families are faced with starvation and it’s high time that humanitarian agencies come to their rescue,” Mr Kiprop said.

The county is a victim of banditry and recently Deputy President William Ruto gave security officers an order to shoot and kill bandits, with the aim of reducing the number of innocent people dying.

Kerio Valley is one of the violence hot spots.

The frequent attacks has forced many to leave their homes to seek shelter in safer areas, such as schools and churches.

And they are in need of basic amenities.

Akeno Mnyoke, a head teacher of one of the schools, described their living conditions as pathetic and expressed fears of a disease outbreak.

"There is scarcity of water in most of the camps and our animals are dying due to the biting drought," he said.

“The ongoing operation has added misery to our lives forcing our children to drop out of school after they migrated to safer areas with their parents.”

PEACEFUL COEXISTENCE

One of the strategies the government has embraced in dealing with the insecurity matter is by deploying Kenya Defence Forces soldiers.

Also, Inspector-General of Police prohibited inhabitants of 11 areas in the county from owning firearms and ordered those with guns to surrender them to police.

Mr Kiprop, who led the sportspeople working under a humanitarian support group, Kenyans Who Care, based in Eldoret, observed that conflict among pastoralists has impacted negatively on the socio-economic lives of the people, appealing for peaceful coexistence.

“There is no way development will be realized unless we live in peace. It is high time you abandon cattle raids and enrol your children to school while engaging in meaningful social economic activities. I urge the community to stop fighting,” Mr Kiprop said.

More donations were made to primary schools Chesitet and Chesakam and Claude Academy Holy Ghost Fathers, Nginyang.

He said the efforts will continue.

Kiprop will be heading to Kampala in Uganda for the IAAF World Cross Country Championship next weekend.

Some of the athletes who accompanied him are former 5,000m champion Benjamin Limo, 800m Olympics champion David Rudisha and Alex Kipchirchir.