A middle aged man was on Sunday evening hacked to death by two herdsmen at Safirisi village, in Hindi ward of Lamu after he tried to drive off animals from his farm.
According to neighbours Julius Mbugua was killed while trying to drive out the herders’ animals from his farm whereupon a dispute ensued resulting in his being stabbed in the stomach.
The two suspects have since escaped and police are now hunting for them, in the nearby Boni Forest.
Tension between farmers and herders in Lamu heightened after the incident and Lamu County Commissioner Samson Macharia has appealed for calm and assured residents that the two assailants will be arrested.
The County commissioner said herders and farmers need to respect each other’s property terming the killing as unnecessary.
Lamu County Police Commander Perminus Kioi in an interview with KNA Monday morning revealed that security agents have since been deployed to the nearby forest in which the two are believed to be hiding.
“It is very wrong the way herders are going about handling conflict by killing farmers whose only offense is to drive animals out of one’s farm,” Kioi said.
The incident comes on the backdrop of a series of conflict resolution meetings convened by Regional Commissioner Joseph Elung’ata, in Gamba area, in which he called on political leaders from Lamu and Tana River to aid in resolving the long standing disputes between farmers and herders in the region.
An agreement was reached that herders use the grazing corridor provided as a way to avert the conflict.
By Amenya Ochieng