Five more people were killed as a conflict pitting two pastoralist communities in Isiolo escalated.
By Ali Abdi
Monday, October 24, 2011
A food monitor in Isiolo, Losike Romano, was shot dead at Kambi Garba while two others — a woman and a child died at Alamach in Central Division in a raging conflict pitting Borana and Somali on one side and Turkana on the other.
Earlier on Saturday, three other people died — two suspected bandits who had attacked a van ferrying camel milk to Isiolo and a home guard allegedly shot by an AP under unclear circumstance.
Officer in charge of operations in Eastern Province, Willy Lugusa pleaded, with residents to give the police time to establish circumstances under which Hassan Nuro Duba was killed as he tried to repulse attackers.
The killings came a day after Eastern PC Claire Omolo held peace meeting with area leaders where she called on the warring communities to co-exit peacefully.
On Sunday, Isiolo OCPD Augustine Nthumbi confirmed the killings, adding that enough security was on the ground to prevent more deaths.
The killings were followed by torching of houses at Kambi Garba, less than 5km from Isiolo town centre.
On Sunday, more families, especially women, children and the elderly trooped into the town fearing for their safety.
Ali Bashir, a spokesman for residents of Kambi Garba said 14 houses and three shops were burnt down by raiders who were allegedly taken there by a white vehicle.
"It was around 3pm when youths backed by armed men were dropped at Kambi Garba Primary School. They set 14 houses and three shops ablaze. We lost property worth millions of shillings," said Mr Bashir.
He said about 5,000 people have fled the area due to fear of attacks, adding that there was no way people would stay if their security was not guaranteed.
At the same time, hundreds of Somali and Borana herdsmen with thousands of livestock started leaving Kipsing and Mulango grazing areas protesting frequent attacks by their rivals.
The animals estimated at about 30,000 caused a huge traffic jam on the Isiolo-Moyale road as the herdsmen left for Meru North en route to Garba-Tulla.
In a related development, CID officers summoned leaders from the Turkana, Samburu, Borana, Somali and Meru communities including 32 councillors.
They recorded statements explaining what they knew about the conflict that has left 17 killed in the last two weeks.
Two weeks ago seven people were shot dead in a dawn raid at Tractor village in Ngaremara. The incident followed the killing of two Garba-Tulla herdsmen at Shab in Igembe North while they were migrating with their animals.
The District Security Intelligence Committee blames incitement by politicians for frequent raids.