Ten killed as Samburu, Borana herders clash in Isiolo
By Josiah Mugo For Citizen Digital
Kenya (Citizen Digital) — Ten people were killed in fresh clashes pitting Borana and Samburu herders in Kom area of Isiolo on Monday.
According to Isiolo County Commissioner George Natembeya, six of the victims were Boranas, four Samburus with the number of injured Boranas remaining unknown as they fled the area using motorbikes.
Natembeya said that the Borana attackers from Merti and Garbatula gained access to the Samburu camp by use of motorbikes, attacked and escaped using the same bikes, a clear pointer that the attack was premeditated.
The county boss, however, indicated that a contingent of security officers has been dispatched to the area to comb through in search of more casualties as well as help restore calm.
Kom area has always been subject to conflict as it is the only place in the region where herders from Samburu, Marsabit and Wajir counties converge during the drought seasons due to the presence of water and grass throughout the year.
The native Borana elders reserve the area for use during the dry seasons and allow other pastoralist communities to graze their animals upon request up to specified boundaries, but the situation gets bloody every time the visitors defy the agreement.
He warned that the region would only become free of clashes once a disarmament exercise is successful, calling for support in terms of adequate security personnel and machinery to conduct the disarmament exercise soonest possible.
The office of the county security team has only been registering the illegal firearms in the hands of the public with the hope that the exercise would curb irresponsible use of the weapons.
Natembeya now says that the water and grass in the area could be enough for all the animals if shared peacefully.
Tension is still rife in the area as the visitors refuse to back off from the area for fear that their animals will die once they leave Kom and go back to their land.