A hospital has been closed due to rising insecurity.
Senior officials from the Ministry of Interior and Coordination said the Catholic Archdiocese of Mombasa had shut down Chumvini Dispensary because of an attack two weeks ago.
Police said two nuns were fighting for their lives in a Mombasa hospital after armed gangsters raided their residence and assaulted them before robbing them of an unknown amount of money and other valuables.
Taveta Deputy County Commissioner Stanley Kamande yesterday condemned the attack as retrogressive. He said he wondered why the suspects would attack a facility that offered vital services.
Mr Kamande, who is also the chairman of the sub-county security committee, said police were following crucial leads that could soon lead to the criminals’ arrest.
“We are sure that security agents will soon catch up with the suspects and prosecute them,” he said.
The closure of the health facility has sparked a public outcry, with residents and leaders petitioning the Government to intensify security to protect them and property.
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The dispensary serves a large population from Chumvini trading centre and surrounding areas, and its closure has dealt a major blow to patients who now have to walk long distances in search of medical care.
Former Challa ward representative Yuda Kilonzo claimed the nuns were attacked by eight gangsters but police said only six were involved in the 3am attack.
Mr Kilonzo said that two of the suspects had pretended to be patients.
“The night guard opened the main gate and ushered in the suspects while the others were cutting the fence at the back to gain entry.”
He added: “The suspects combed and ransacked the residence. They also attacked the nuns and left them for dead.”
One nun, however, escaped unscathed after she hid in a toilet.
The politician said the injured women were taken to the Taveta sub-county hospital and later transferred to Mombasa for specialised treatment.
Taveta OCPD Francis Warui said investigations were still going on.
“The suspects dropped a handcuff in the residence in the course of their robbery. We are treating the cuffs as exhibits,” said Mr Warui. He asked the public to volunteer information that could lead to the arrest of the suspects.
Villagers claimed that criminals from the neighbouring country frequently sneaked in to steal cattle and terrorise them.