Interior CS Fred Matiang'i announces 21-day security operation in Kerio Valley

The CS for Interior Fred Matiang’i and the Inspector-General of Police Hilary Mutyambai. [File, Standard]

Interior CS Fred Matiang’i has announced a 21-day operation in Kerio Valley to flush out bandits and illegal arms.

His announcement comes a day after Rift Valley Regional Commissioner Mohammed Maalim imposed a dusk to dawn curfew in parts of the three counties weeks after three children and a man was attacked and killed by suspected assailants.

Matiang’i made the announcement on Wednesday, June 8 afternoon after chairing a meeting with top security officials drawn from the counties of West Pokot, Baringo, and Elgeyo Marakwet at Tot police station in Elgeyo  Marakwet.

He said a review of the current deployment following the declaration of a 30-day curfew in Elgeyo Marakwet County will also be undertaken and the command of the operation placed under high-ranking security officers.

“We have today agreed to undertake the replacement of the security team leaders and the reorganization of our structure. We have tried all manner of things to resolve this problem before and we are determined to get it right this time,” the CS said.

Apart from the operation, the curfew will be imposed alongside a disarmament operation targeting illegal guns blamed for perpetuating deadly and cyclic violence that has claimed many lives over the years.

CS Matiang’I visited the families of three children killed in a bandit attack in Tot, Elgeyo Marakwet County last month and directed that the security teams in Kerio Valley be overhauled to end frequent attacks.

 “I have met with the mothers and family members of the children who were killed weeks ago. There is nothing more heart-wrenching than going through the experience. What do you tell a mother who has lost a child in such a manner,” the CS added.

The CS who also held a meeting with chiefs and their assistants directed an immediate assessment of the competence and suitability of the entire team saying many of them were compromised by political and ethnic affiliations.