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Besieged Kamket arrives in Nakuru for questioning over Laikipia insecurity

Kamket was in February arrested and grilled over Kapedo clashes in Turkana County and was later released after about five hours of grilling.

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Kamket arrives at the Regional DCI Headquarters

Tiaty Member of Parliament, William Kamket has arrived at the regional Directorate of Criminal Investigation headquarters in Nakuru for questioning in connection to Laikipia County insecurity.

Earlier in the day, former Laikipia North MP, Mathew Lempurkel was arrested at his Ongata Rongai home in Kajiado County and is being held at Integrity Centre, Nairobi.

Regional Commissioner, George Natembeya today morning said security agencies were looking for three politicians on suspicion of fueling banditry attacks in Laikipia County.

“When they go to Nairobi they pretend to be good people but on the ground, they are the ones who are funding the violence. A time has come for them to stop shading those crocodile tears,” said Natembeya.

This comes after eight people, including three police officers, lost their lives in just six days from bandit attacks in the area, even with a high police presence in the region.

Officials said politicians, a judge, senior military, and police officers are among those who have illegally moved livestock into Laikipia Nature Conservancy.

Kamket was in February arrested and grilled over Kapedo clashes in Turkana County and was later released after about five hours of grilling.

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Laikipia

Laikipia insecurity hampers government’s drought risk management programs

The insecurity has affected the broader community in the vital battle against climate change, land degradation, and sustainability projects such as avocado and apiary.

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A fattened Boran bull. Photo/Courtesy

The ongoing insecurity situation in Laikipia West has hampered the national government’s drought risk management programs at the Laikipia Nature Conservancy (LNC).

The National Drought Management Authority has partnered with the LNC in an annual fattening and breed stock improvement cycle for about 1,500 to 4,000 local livestock.

The LNC Executive Director, Sveva Gallmann says that local cattle are no longer able to access the grazing lands due to the ongoing insecurity.

She said LNC has for years provided structured grazing for community members without problems, generating income for the pastoralists of over KShs100 million a year.

“We had to stop this fattening scheme due to an insurgence of armed men with over 15, 000 head of cattle coming from other Counties,” she stated in a statement to newsrooms.

She revealed that the LNC had done away with cattle rearing projects and dedicated its well-managed grass bank to the neighbouring communities.

However, she noted, the armed insurgence has debilitated the scheme as many areas of the conservancy no longer have any grass left at all, and local pastoralists livelihoods are at stake.

Sveva added that the insecurity has affected the broader community in the vital battle against climate change, land degradation, and sustainability projects such as avocado and apiary.

“The LNC looks forward to the successful eviction of the remaining militia within LNC and a resumption of LNC’s work with government to deliver water, grazing and livelihoods to its local communities,” she stated.

The insecurity has also affected similar livestock programs at Kifuku Boran Stud, a cattle ranch near Rumuruti and other ranches in Laikipia County.

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Laikipia

Laikipia West insecurity aimed at displacing local inhabitants, LNC management says

The region is not new to insecurity incidences, despite the government assuring the conservationists, farmers and ranchers of their safety and property.

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An armed herder

The management of Laikipia Nature Conservancy (LNC) has expressed fears that the insecurity in Laikipia West is politically incited aimed at displacing local inhabitants.

LNC Executive Director, Sveva Gallmann noted that in pre-election years, such as this, armed bandits invade the area and terrorise residents, including LNC management.

Renowned author and conservationist, Kuki Gallmann was in May his year shot through the leg when she encountered bandits in her LNC property near Ol Moran.

“My mother is one of the dozens of community members who have been wounded or killed in recent months in Laikipia West,” stated Sveva in a statement.

In 2017, Kuki and her daughter, Sveva, were severely shot at and their exclusive safari lodge burnt down by suspected cattle raiders in the conservancy.

The 85,000-acre LNC was purchased from a Kenyan company in 1972, with leases that still run for many decades. From 1983, the land was dedicated to conservation and community projects.

Through the preservation of its extensive forest cover, it is the primary water tower for the World Heritage Sites of Lake Baringo and Lake Bogoria.

The region is not new to insecurity incidences, despite the government assuring the conservationists, farmers and ranchers of their safety and property.

In March 2017, herders shot and killed Sosian Ranch co-owner Tristan Voorspuy while he was inspecting a burnt lodge in the expansive 24,000-acre ranch.

Armed herders from as far as Isiolo, Baringo, Pokot, Samburu and Marakwet regions have for years invaded and terrorized Suyian, Ol Maisor, ADC Mutara, LNC, Kifuku, Mugie, Sosian and other ranches.

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Natembeya slams politicians over Laikipia unrest

Addressing media in Nakuru on Wednesday just a day after he held a security meeting in Laikipia, Natembeya alluded that a section of local politicians were facilitating the banditry activities but their days were numbered.

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Rift Valley Regional Commissioner George Natembeya at a past address.PHOTO/Courtesy.

Rift Valley Regional Commissioner George Natembeya has slammed local politicians whom he said are behind the banditry attacks and killings being witnessed in Laikipia County.

Addressing media in Nakuru on Wednesday just a day after he held a security meeting in Laikipia, Natembeya alluded that local politicians were facilitating the banditry activities but their days were numbered.

Through the ongoing Multi-agency operation in the area, Natembeya said the government will clear the area and bring to book individuals behind the banditry attacks that have so far claimed 8 people among them 3 security officers and, and left 6 others nursing injuries.

In a strongly worded address, Natembeya warned politicians to keep off the ongoing security operations in the area noting that the politicians were behaving holier in Nairobi but fueling conflict back at home.

“We are calling on politicians to keep off this operation. This is a security matter and we are on top of things. This is not time for local leaders to go there and shed crocodile tears yet they know very well they are the root cause of the insecurity” he said.

This even as the government has intensified major security operations to flush out illegal occupants of Laikipia Conservancy and its environs following the declaration of the region as a disturbed area.

Natembeya once again revealed that the animals in the area belong to key powerful people and some of them have been summoned to record statements on their role in the banditry attacks and killings.

According to the RC, prior information shows that the politicians are facilitating the activities being carried out by morans in the Olmoran area.

“The culture of moranism is not helping us currently as they are now being used to harass locals. There is a probability that leaders in the area are facilitating the same. We are investigating and when we get proper evidence we shall hold them accountable” said Natembeya.

The government statistics indicate that close to 200 families have been displaced 200 for fear of their security. Another 22 households were also torched in the recent attack but the government has assured of security and settlement of the families.

On Monday, the National Security Council (NSC) declared Laikipia a disturbed and a security operation area after weeks of escalating insecurity that had led to the loss of lives and displacement of many people.

The government declared a dusk to dawn curfew in the troubled Laikipia Nature Conservancy ahead of the security operation to flush out bandits.

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