Leaders from Samburu County have condemned the shooting of three people during the ongoing operation in Laikipia and want the government to call off the operation.
The leaders allege that the ongoing operation is politically instigated as the police have been collecting IDs of locals and looting their livestock a move the leaders have termed as economic sabotage.
Speaking in a city hotel on Thursday, the leaders led by Nominated Senator Naisula Lesuuda, Woman Representative Maison Leshomo, Samburu Senator Sammy Leshore and Gabriel Lengoiboni an aspirant for Governor’s seat said that the operation should be stopped and dialogue given a chance.
Ms Lesuuda said that the office of the President and the interior ministry should mediate the talks between the leaders and residents of Laikipia instead of using force.
She said that since the operation begun, over 500 animals have been lost through shooting and 35 people have been arrested while others injured by the police and the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) soldiers deployed in the county.
“We want the national government to stop this operation and call us for a dialogue since the people are suffering and the allegation that Samburu have invaded the ranches are untrue.
“We have lived in consensus with the ranchers and even pay them to feed in their grounds why now…we demand answers from the government,” posed Ms Lesuuda.
Ms Leshomo said that they locals have been driven to Laikipia due to drought and once the rains come they will go back asking the government to allow them live in consensus with the ranchers.
She said that police had already arrested those suspected to have killed Briton Tristan Voorspuy and that the Samburu where not involved.
“The original communities in Laikipia are the Samburu, Pokot, Turkana and Kikuyu and it is a cosmopolitan area and the notion that Samburu and Pokot have invaded Laikipia is untrue,” said Ms Leshomo.