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Locals turn heat on suspected thugs

By | February 12th 2011

By George Olwenya

Owing to failure by police to curb runway insecurity in Siaya County, residents have taken the law into their hands.

Mob lynching has become rampant, with 20 suspects being lynched in the last two months across the five constituencies in the county.

Motorcycle taxi operators, boda boda riders, and villagers have mobilised themselves to weed out suspected thugs.

Last week, five suspects were killed by the public in different incidences in Bondo.

In one of the incidents, 100 motorcycle taxi operators in Bondo town beat up and killed a 30-year-old suspect, they claimed to have had connections with the murder of one of their colleagues.

The motorcyclists claimed they cornered two suspects at night with a motorbike they had robbed one of their colleagues.

The duo reportedly abandoned the motorcycle and ran away.

They reported to Bondo Police Station where they left the motorbike as the police were still investigating the incident as their colleague had gone missing.

But the following day, the missing rider was found murdered. The motorcyclists hunted down the suspects before they cornered one at Bar-Kowino sub location and killed him.

A 25-year-old suspect linked to stock theft in Bar-Kowino was also cornered, beaten and killed by an irate mob at the banks of River Yala in Bondo district last Friday.

In another incident, villagers followed footprints into the home of a suspect cattle thief Oganyo Agwanda who was lynched by an irate mob at Kibuye village in the same district.

Bondo OCPD Patrick Mang’oli warned the public against taking the law into their hands whenever they arrest suspects. A day after Mang’oli’s warning, a middle-aged man who was found breaking into a shop was lynched by a mob in Bondo town, after police were informed but failed to show in time.

A group of neighbours spotted the suspect breaking into the shop and alerted the police as they kept vigil while hiding but decided to confront the thief inside the shop.

In the last two months, Siaya town has not been left behind as two thugs were also lynched by the public at Ulafu in East Alego.

The duo were cornered by villagers before being frog-matched to a house they had rented and hidden stolen items, that included electronic goods and sewing machines before they set upon them with crude weapons.

At Rabango area, another suspect was last week set ablaze by members of the public after he was caught stealing from a house he had broken into.

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