NAIROBI (AA) – Five people have died so far in ongoing clashes which have rocked the Nandi-Kisumu area of western Kenya.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Nyando area police chief Elias Gitonga said that the fighting erupted on Saturday over stolen cattle.
Traditionally in Kenya cattle rustling was common among nomadic-pastoral populations; the activity is still being practiced by communities living in remote areas.
“Reports on the ground show that the fighting started when one side of the community came to claim stolen cattle from the other side. So far, five people have lost their lives while around 11 others are in hospital nursing arrow wounds,” Gitonga said.
“We have beefed up security in the Kibigori area, which is the epicenter of the fighting. Tension is still high in the area as youths are walking with crude weapons,” he added.
Gitonga said young people were openly carrying machetes, bows and arrows and other crude weapons.
An unspecified number of people have also been displaced after more than 10 houses were razed and livestock stolen.
Nyando Member of Parliament Fred Outa told Anadolu Agency that he had toured the affected area on Saturday and called for peace.
“The residents living along the border are living in fear. I told the youths to put down their weapons and to stop fighting.
“Those who have been displaced need shelter and food and I have asked the county government to handle that, but still tension is high.”
The MP added that he wanted the police to arrest anyone causing violence or being found in possession of crude weapons.
Locals say that police took long to respond to the clashes. As of Sunday, areas along the border have remained like ghost towns as many people fled their homes fearing fresh attacks.
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