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Kitui county officials to be charged over charcoal truck arson

Police in Kitui on Monday arrested the County Executive for Environment John Makau over the torching of a truck ferrying charcoal last week.

Mr Makau was summoned to the Directorate of Criminal Investigation offices in Kitui on Monday afternoon alongside county community liaison officer David Mbisi.

They were questioned by detectives over the incident.


The two senior county officers were put in custody later in the evening, awaiting arraignment in court.

County DCI boss Prosper Bosire confirmed the arrests, saying his detectives were looking for more suspects in connection with the incident.

“We arrested two county officers and questioned them over their alleged involvement in the burning of a charcoal truck at Kanyonyoo,” Mr Bosire told the Nation on the phone.

He said they would be arraigned at the Embu law courts on Wednesday to face arson charges and destruction of property.


Mr Bosire said investigations had established more people were involved in the incident and that police were going to arrest more suspects regardless of their status in the society.

He, however, said the police crackdown the arson suspects was not aimed at frustrating the Kitui County Government’s ban on charcoal trade.

It is aimed at maintaining law and order and protecting peoples’ properties, Mr Bosire said.

“The county government can continue enforcing its ban but we won’t allow trucks passing Kitui from other counties where charcoal trade is allowed and legalised to be attacked by people taking law into their hands,” he said.

The charcoal truck was burnt on Wednesday last week after it was impounded along the Mwingi-Nairobi highway.

Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu had launched a crackdown on charcoal trade.

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