5,000 pupils out of school following clashes in Nandi, Kisumu counties

Tuesday January 12 2016

Ms Jenifer Okumu picks up the remains from her house that was torched following deadly clashes on the Kisumu-Nandi border on January 10, 2016. More than 5,000 remained at home after seven primary schools were closed on January 11, 2015. PHOTO | TONNY OMONDI | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Ms Jenifer Okumu picks up the remains from her house that was torched following deadly clashes on the Kisumu-Nandi border on January 10, 2016. More than 5,000 remained at home after seven primary schools were closed on January 11, 2015. PHOTO | TONNY OMONDI | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By TOM MATOKE
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By MOSES ODHIAMBO
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More than 5,000 children have remained at home after seven primary schools on the border of Nandi and Kisumu counties were closed on Monday following deadly clashes over cattle rustling.

The violence has so far left five people dead, 11 others seriously injured, and houses burnt.

The affected primary schools in Nandi are Chepsuereta, Kapsigirai, Railway and Kibigori. Those in Kisumu County are Oroba, Guok and Nyangore.

At the same time, leaders in Nandi County on Monday told off their Kisumu counterparts for accusing them of funding the animal thefts in a bid to have the boundaries established by the colonial government changed.

More than 300 security officers from the two counties have been sent to the area to quell the violence.

Parents are worried that their school-going children might be attacked by the warring groups, a situation that prompted the closure of the educational institutions.

Trading centres in the area have also remained deserted.

Kenya National Union of Teachers’ Nandi South Secretary Stephen Misoi asked the national government to beef up security in the schools and surrounding areas so that normalcy returns.

“The central government should deal with insecurity along the border of Nandi and Kisumu counties, and ensure innocent children and teachers are not affected,” he said.

Meanwhile, Knut’s Nyando  Executive Secretary John Obungu said teachers sought to remain at home on safety grounds.

“Most of the pupils who were displaced as a result of the Friday fights have stayed at home. The area is not yet peaceful,” Mr Obungu told the Nation yesterday.

He said teachers who live in Chemelil Town had feared for their lives as the road they use to school was one of the worst affected areas.

The National Cohesion and Integration Commission is set to engage the groups from today in an effort to bring lasting peace to the area.

“The commission will hold one meeting in Kisumu today and another on Wednesday in Nandi,” said Nyanza regional coordinator Francis Mutie.