By Boaz Kipngeno, Michael Ssitoti
Samburu, Kenya: Three herders have been killed in a fresh attack in Baragoi, Samburu County, as several head of cattle stolen on Saturday were recovered by police.
The first victim was shot dead after more than 100 heavily armed raiders, believed to be from Pokot community, attacked Nachola village in Baragoi on Saturday morning before driving away with the animals towards Baringo East.
According to Kenya Red Cross Society Samburu County Co-ordinator, Mugambi Gitonga, two others were killed in a deadly battle which lasted several hours after Turkana local herders seeking to recover the stolen animals confronted the attackers.
He said the confrontation led to a fierce fight after the herders followed the armed bandits along the Suguta Valley near Amayia hills.
Gitonga said others were injured and one among them was rescued yesterday morning after Kenya Red Cross volunteers informed Baragoi Police Station OCS.
Two suffered minor bullet injuries and were treated and released at Nachola Dispensary.
“The first victim was shot in the head and the other in the chest. The third victim was seriously wounded and lost a lot of blood before he died,” Gitonga explained saying locals claim at least 400 head of cattle were stolen.
The incident also comes days after armed bandits erected a road block at Learata near Archers Post along Wamba-Isiolo road and attacked four vehicles killing two passengers and injuring two.
When The Standard contacted Samburu North Police Boss Lanet Sili, he could not confirm the deaths saying he is heading with a team to the scene.
“I only know of one death, if there are others then I am yet to know and confirm,” he said.
Samburu County Police Commandant was also unwilling to reveal more about the incident but disclosed that they have had a meeting with other security officials and resolved to visit the scene.
Nachola Ward MCA Lawrence Lorunyei said about 50 cattle were recovered after a day long battle.
Lorunyei pointed an accusing finger at security officials in the county, saying they have taken sides and demanded an overhaul.
“Why is it that Government machinery like police helicopters were not used to ensure the attackers do not vanish like it was used after raiders drove about 80 cattle in Tuum area recently?” Lorunyei asked.
But Anthony Kamitu, an Operations Commander who led disarmament in the region and is currently in Nairobi, rubbished the claims, saying security agents are committed to ensuring that all residents are safe.