BY OSINDE OBARE
Over 20 primary schools have been broken into and textbooks worth Sh9 million stolen in the last one year.
Two night guards were also murdered in robbery incidents in two schools recently.
Kitale OCPD Lucas Ogara said the suspects have been arrested. They also recovered more than 300 textbooks from a rented room in Kibomet estate. Ogara said other items recovered from the suspects included a master key and padlock cutters.
“For a couple of months, we have been pursuing reports over rampant theft of books from schools. We have finally apprehended two suspects and we expect to arrest more culprits,” said Ogara.
The textbooks’ cartel, Ogara said, has connections as far as Murang’a, Nairobi and South Sudan where the stolen books are sold.
“We are still working on information that the books have ready market in South Sudan. The arrest is a milestone to our investigations,” he added.
Ogara noted the culprits involved in the syndicate target schools that have inadequate security.
County director of education Joseph Wamocho said books worth over Sh9 million have been lost to criminals thus crippling learning in most schools. He added Kwanza District has lost books worth Sh1.2 million, Trans Nzoia West Sh3.4 million and Trans Nzoia East Sh2.9 million.
“We are perturbed with the cartels. The criminals have paralysed learning in most schools. We are happy that police have acted and arrested the culprits. This should end,” said Wamocho.