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Bandits kill man in Kerio Valley ahead of Deputy President's tour

By Silah Koskei and Alex Kiprotich | Published Fri, February 24th 2017 at 00:00, Updated February 23rd 2017 at 21:46 GMT +3


A man was on Wednesday night killed by bandits in the volatile Kerio Valley, Elgeyo Marakwet County.

The man and seven others were in a matatu that was travelling to Tot centre when the bandits sprayed the vehicle with bullets.

Marakwet East police boss Remmy Njiru said the man, who was driving the matatu, was shot in the head and died on the spot.

He said the passengers were rescued by officers who responded swiftly after hearing the gunshots at around 7.30pm.

“Investigations are underway to ascertain the motive of the attack,” he explained.

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Area residents claimed that the vehicle had been attacked two weeks ago.

The attack comes a day before Deputy President William Ruto is scheduled to visit the region in efforts to find a lasting solution to the insecurity.

There has been increasing tension in the area, with communities accusing the government of laxity.

Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen said Ruto's visit would kick off as planned, adding that security had been beefed up. Ruto is today expected to visit Arror, Liter, and Chesongoch areas, which border Marakwet and West Pokot counties.

Murkomen said: "Personally I believe that there is a political hand involved (in the attacks) and that is why every time we seek to end the vice, some individuals want it to continue so that they can benefit from the discontentment of the violence."

Separately, police are investigating six individuals following the killing of Loyamarok MCA Kibet Cheretei and Tiaty parliamentary aspirant Pepe Kitambaa in Marigat on Friday. Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet Thursday said officers have identified six people who are subject to further forensic inquiries before they are arrested.

"Following the murders, the police commenced immediate investigations to unearth the authors of the crime. As at now, we have recorded a number of crucial witness statements and from other persons of interests," said Boinnet through spokesperson George Kinoti.

Appealing to the public to remain calm and refrain from speculation, Boinnet said detectives investigating the matter were under strict instructions to expedite the inquiries and arraign the culprits before the court.