Kenya Forest Service clarifies incident of alleged assault by forest rangers

Kenya Forest Service headquarters in Nairobi. [Courtesy]

The Kenya Forest Service (KFS) has clarified an incident where a man identified as Fred Limba, was allegedly assaulted by forest rangers in South Marmanet Forest, Nyahururu, Laikipia County.

The incident was reported by Citizen Digital on September 8, 2023.

According to a statement by KFS, the incident occurred on September 4, 2023, when two KFS rangers on their normal patrols encountered a group of illegal loggers who were felling trees inside the government forest without any authority.

The rangers, KFS said challenged the loggers to surrender, but one of them turned violent and assaulted one of the rangers and escaped arrest. 

The injured ranger was assisted by his colleague and taken to Nyahururu Referral Hospital where he was treated and discharged.

KFS said the incident was booked at Nyahururu Police Station under OB number 74/07/09/2023.

On September 7, 2023, five forest rangers and three foresters led by the County Forest Commander Inspector Patricia Ngugi were on patrol following the previous detected forest destruction and the incidence of assault on one of the rangers.

According to KFS,  ranger who had been injured in the previous incident positively spotted one of the suspects who had assaulted him. 

They arrested him and took him to Nyahururu Police Station and booked him under OB number 50/07/09/2023.

“During the arrest, the suspect assaulted one of the arresting officers, who was taken to Nyahururu Referral Hospital and later transferred to Aga Khan Hospital for treatment,” KFS said. 

The suspect was released on free bond and is set to appear before court to take plea.