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Meru Northern grazing zone declared special operation zone

Interior and National Administration Cabinet Secretary (CS) Professor Kithure Kindiki has declared Meru’s Northern grazing zone a special operation area.

This comes two days after former Antubetwe Member of County Assembly (MCA) George Kaliunga was killed by suspected bandits at Kinanduba, while following up stolen goats.

Speaking during a security meeting at Antubetwe Chiefs Camp in Igembe North during a security meeting, the CS said Special Forces will be deployed in the area to flush out the criminals, who have been killing people and stealing their animals.

“Just like we have been doing in other counties rocked with banditry, we will send special forces here with a view to restoring security and ensuring the stolen animals were returned back to their rightful owners.

The CS further ordered for establishment of an Anti-Stock Theft Unit (ASTU) at Lololo to deal with the rampant cases of rustling at the border between Isiolo and Meru Counties.

“As we firm up the operation exercise, I direct that an ASTU base be established at Lololo with immediate effect. We have enough police officers and arms to safeguard the people against any security threat,” said Prof. Kindiki.

The CS also directed the local security agencies to form a special unit to investigate the killing of the former MCA adding that there was likelihood that his death was not a case of cattle rustling.

“According to the information I have gathered, the death of Kaliunga was not accidental. I therefore direct the investigators to seriously look into the issue, aimed at apprehending those who were involved,” he said.

He added: “Like I have done in other matters where Kenyans are killed in unusual circumstances, I will be giving out further directives on how investigations will be carried out.”

On the issue of the boundary disputes between Meru and Tharaka Nithi Counties, the CS directed the County Commissioners from the two counties to hold an urgent meeting to come up with a program on how the disputes will be dealt with.

He also promised to upscale the number of National Police Reservists in the Northern grazing zone from the current 60 to 200.

Professor Kindiki was accompanied by Members of Parliament including Moses Kirima (Imenti Central), Mugambi Rindikiri (Buuri), Senator Kathuri Murungi and Meru County MCAs led by Majority Whip Jim Muchui.

By Dickson Mwiti

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