Police boss, five officers arrested and detained in Ethiopia

Wednesday October 26 2016

Marsabit County police commander Ben Kogo.

Marsabit County police commander Ben Kogo, who confirmed on October 26, 2016 that Illret Police Station commander Chief Inspector Christopher Nalianya and five other officers are being held in Ethiopia. PHOTO | KEN BETT | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

More by this Author

Ethiopian police from the Bubua police station arrested Illret Police Station OCS Chief Inspector Christopher Nalianya and five other officers from Marsabit on October 23, police say.

The station commander was accompanied by Constable Samson Kato, who was driving a police truck, Constable Patrick Juma, Constable Samson Njenga, National Police Reservist (Inspector) Lomide Achala, and the Illret Ward administrator, Mr Koriye.

The team had crossed the border to secure the release of a reservist, Salim Kala, who had been arrested on October 21 for allegedly fishing along the shores of Lake Turkana on the Ethiopian side.

They were all armed but were placed in custody after their firearms were confiscated. The vehicle, a Toyota Land Cruiser (GK B414E), is also detained there.

The Kenyan authorities said that efforts to release them were under way through a liaison officer in Moyale and that they were in contact with the local administrator at Jinga Omarate district, where the officers are being held.

Marsabit County police commander Ben Kogo has confirmed the officers were arrested.

But he said officials were yet to be told why the officers were arrested.

"They had gone to Ethiopia to secure the release of a reservist when they were arrested. We are yet to establish why they were arrested but were trying to negotiate with Ethiopia authorities for them to be released," he told the Nation by phone.

Several incidents have been reported this year involving security agencies from both countries.

On October 16, Kenya Defence Forces soldiers from the Oda Camp were deployed to Sololo after the Ethiopian army raided a village in Marsabit.

About 100 Ethiopian soldiers entered Kenya and surrounded Golole Village, about 9km west of the Sololo Police Station.

The soldiers claimed they were pursuing Oromo Liberation Front militants suspected to have killed police officers in Ethiopia.

In the process, a herder was killed by the Ethiopian soldiers.