Tension high along Tharaka Nithi-Meru border after attack

Friday September 22 2017

One of the houses torched by assailants in Mugwii village, Tharaka Nithi County, on September 21, 2017. PHOTO | ALEX NJERU | NATION MEDIA GROUP

One of the houses torched by assailants in Mugwii village, Tharaka Nithi County, on September 21, 2017. PHOTO | ALEX NJERU | NATION MEDIA GROUP  

By ALEX NJERU
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Tension is growing along the Tharaka-Imenti Central border following Thursday night attacks by unknown people in Mugwii village, Tharaka Nithi County.

Tharaka South OCPD Walter Obondo said nine attackers believed to be from the neighbouring Meru County struck at around 1am and burnt two houses before injuring five people.

“The attackers’ burnt houses belonging to Mr Mwiti Mucee and Ms Kanyua Kamende,” said Mr Obondo, adding that the police are looking for four suspects who were seen in the village during the day.

Speaking to the Nation at Karimba Dispensary on Friday, Mr Mucee said the assailants accused them of grabbing their land.

STRANGERS

“We were born here and our parents have lived here for a long time but strangers from the neighbouring Meru County want us to vacate,” said Mr Mucee.

Mr Mucee said the criminals tied him as another man doused them with petrol before they were saved by the locals.

He said that the attackers fled into the nearby bush after locals, who were armed with arrows and pangas responded to their distress calls.

Ms Kamende said the assailants burnt her house, beat her up and kidnapped her and her child before abandoning them in a thicket some kilometers away.

INJURED

“They burnt all my property and injured me before they abandoned me in a thicket away from my homestead,” said Ms Kamende.

Mr Obondo, who said security had been beefed along the border, urged locals from Tharaka to allow the government to resolve the matter.

Mr John Kithetu, told the Nation on phone that some locals who live along the border have fled from their homes after the attack.

“We will still sleep in the bush because we fear the attackers could raid again,” said Mr Kithetu.

The border dispute between the Tharaka and Imenti people has led to many deaths and destruction of property.