Motorcycle gang grabs a tidy sum in Kitale robbery

The robbers waylaid the businessman and ordered him out of the car. [File, Standard]

Officers in Kitale are pursuing suspected robbers who stole an unknown amount of money from a businessman of Indian descent Tuesday morning.

The robbers, who were armed with rifles, waylaid the trader's vehicle and ordered him out alongside his driver before escaping with the money in a motorbike.

The 9am incident occurred along Nandi Road, opposite Kitale CMC Group premises, just as the town was slowly coming to life after the Christmas festivities.

According to eyewitnesses, the three gunmen blocked the vehicle and asked for the money at gunpoint.

"I had gone to deposit money at an M-Pesa shop and saw a man in a heavy jacket alight from a motorbike that blocked a pick-up vehicle. He unzipped his jacket, removed a gun and cocked it while pointing at the driver," said the eyewitness.

The witness said it happened in a flash and the thugs grabbed a parcel from the vehicle before fleeing on the motorbike.

Another witness, who only identified himself as Juma, said he, at first, thought the gunman was a police officer.

The robbers did not fire a single shot.

Police sources indicated that close to Sh2.7 million was stolen in the early morning incident that left some of the passers-by and onlookers scampering.

Barely three weeks ago, robbers riding on a motorbike fatally shot another trader of Indian descent and his employee in the town before fleeing with loot from the businessman"s car parts shop.

Traders in the town have since raised concerns over the spiralling insecurity and called on the government to beef up security.

Trans Nzoia chapter of Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI) chairman Martin Waliaula called on the Inspector General of Police Japheth Koome to help track down the suspects.

"We are calling on the government to ensure the culprits are brought to book so that traders can go about their businesses freely but as long as the perpetrators remain at large, traders will not be able to do business freely," said Waliaula.

Waliaula pointed out that wanton insecurity has lowered turnover and that some investors were running away from the town for they could be the next targets.

Nominated MCA Margaret Wanjala, who lost her relative in the earlier robbery incident, also called on the government to track down the culprits to restore confidence in its security systems.