Tension as boda boda riders kill suspected thief, burn property in Tharaka-Nithi

Tuesday January 12 2016

Residents of Kanoo Village in Tharaka Nithi

Residents of Kanoo Village in Tharaka Nithi County inspect a house which was burnt by angry boda boda riders on January 10, 2016. The riders, who were protesting against increasing cases of theft, also lynched one of the suspects. PHOTO | ALEX NJERU | NATION MEDIA GROUP  

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Tension was high in Ndunguri Sub-Location, Tharaka-Nithi County Monday after a suspected thief was killed and property burnt by tens of boda boda riders in a two-day raid.

On Saturday the riders burnt to death a man identified as ‘Simba’ and torched two houses belonging to a brother of the suspect.

On Sunday, the riders stormed the village again and set ablaze two houses and a vehicle.

Tharaka-Nithi police boss Johnstone Ipara told Nation.co.ke by phone that he has asked Maara deputy county commissioner and his security team to convene a meeting with the villagers and the riders to restore peace.

“Police officers are on ground to restore peace and arrest any suspects of the crimes,” said Mr Ipara.


He said police had launched investigations to arrest and prosecute those involved in the crime.

He asked residents to report any suspect to the police so that legal action can be taken to ensure justice.

“The properties burnt belong to relatives of the suspects and those found to have been involved will be treated as criminals,” he said.

He urged locals to surrender any stolen motorbike to police and warned those being linked to the stealing.

“Yesterday a motorbike belonging to one of the suspects, Kinoti Kinyua, who fled the angry mob was surrendered to Ntumu Police Station by a rider and I urge others to follow suite,” said the county police boss.

Mugumango Chief Godfrey Nyaga said that a number of youths suspected to be members of the gang had fled their homes for fear of being killed.

A boda boda rider who sought anonymity for fear of being linked to the killings said that more than five suspects are trageted and will be burnt once apprehended.