Gunshots were heard as Cabinet Secretary for Interior addressed the residents of Mandongoi in the Mwingi North constituency. CS Kindiki visited Kitui County after an outcry from the residents over the invasion by the camel herders who have been causing insecurity in Mwingi North and Mutha in Kitui South.
The gunshots were allegedly from the Somali camel herders confronting a section of residents from Mandongoi area forcing CS Kindiki’s chopper to take off after his speech.
The CS called upon the camel herders to immediately leave Kitui or face forceful eviction after defying orders from the Regional Commissioner who had given them an ultimatum but they failed to honor it.
Kindiki said that they will deploy more security, especially in Mandongoi where residents were forced to sleep in forests fearing being attacked by the camel herders. That forced learning to be disrupted in Mandongoi Primary School.
“We have set up a temporary police station waiting for the construction of a permanent one with 23 police officers to guard the people of this area so that they can be secure. What has brought me here is matters of insecurity which has been an issue to you and we don’t want to hear that again,” the CS stated.
He said that the camel herders who have been walking with herds of camels searching for water and pasture should abide by the law failure to which law will take its course. The CS affirmed that the culprits will be dealt with according to the law without profiling them based on their ethnicity.
“You must respect the community that welcomed you where you are and from today no one has permission to feed his cattle without the permission of the community where you have visited. The camel herders who have led to the death of some of the residents should get out of Kitui because it has rained and go to where they come from, the only camels that we want to be left here are those belonging to the people of Kitui,” Kindiki added.
He warned the camel herders not to continue with their arrogance and vowed to ensure that the problem of being attacked by the perpetrators is finished. He promised to come back on Friday if they won’t have left for their places and ensure that they vacate.
“I want to challenge the criminals who think they have better weapons, tactics, and instruments better than the government of Kenya and therefore I’m ordering those who have been grazing in this area and don’t come from this area that they return to their homeland,” he reiterated.
The CS pointed out that he will deploy more security forces to ensure that the camel herders are reinforced to get out of the area. He ordered the residents not to take the law into their hands as a way of revenge despite that two people have been killed in Mandongoi by the herders.
CS Kindiki was in the company of Senator Enoch Wambua, Mwingi North MP Paul Nzengu, Kitui County Commissioner, and other senior government officials.