Victims want cattle rustling declared robbery with violence

Cattle rustling

The Kenya National Commission on Human Rights has come out to support residents of Bartabwa area in Baringo County who want the government to criminalize cattle rustling as a robbery with violence and enact stringent penalties for the perpetrators.

Speaking during a public hearing held by the Kenya National Commission on Human rights in Bartabwa, KNCHR chair Shatika Chivusia said that the commission’s preliminary findings have revealed that some communities possess firearms which are used to execute the heinous crime that breeds animosity among neighbors.

Chivusia, however, assured the residents that justice would prevail and expressed support for collective disarmament that is conducted in a humane manner to ensure peace reigns among the neighbours.

One of the residents, Aengwo Harrison, who is also a victim of cattle rustling, narrated how armed raiders invaded Chepkesin Village, drove off their livestock and destroyed beehives that are a source of livelihood for them.

Luka Cheboi, who sustained a bullet injury on his hand during one of the raids, said the invaders shot his right hand before stealing his flock.

“I was admitted at Mediheal Hospital in Eldoret for three months and I could not manage to foot the bill that had accumulated to Sh100,000,” said Cheboi

The victims appealed to the government to protect them and asked for school fees waivers, bursaries and scholarships for pupils and students whose parents lost their sources of income due to the perennial raids within the region.

Meanwhile, two residents of South-West Nyakach in Kisumu County reportedly sustained serious injuries after suspected cattle rustlers shot them with arrows in a series of attacks before stealing four cows in Nyabondo and three in Jimo West on Saturday.

Confirming the incident, Kisumu County Commissioner John Elungata said the attackers stormed the home of 59-year-old Mzee Onyango Okoro in Nyabondo Village and shot him in the chest before disappearing with his cattle.

Another victim, Lawrence Jabuya, was shot on the back as he responded to a distress call by Okore .

A team of police officers from Kericho and Kisumu Counties have, however, nabbed six suspected raiders and recovered five out of the seven cows that had been stolen, as one other suspect escaped at Sigowet area in Kericho.

Elingata assured residents that police have enough leads that will guide them to the culprits.

The two victims were escorted to Nyabondo hospital where they were referred to Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital for removal of the arrows.

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Story By Elizabeth Asasha
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