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Detectives grill Taita Taveta leaders over locals-herders dispute

Taita Taveta Governor Granton Samboja is Monday morning being grilled by detectives over the longstanding conflict between the county’s locals and camel herders.

Also appearing to answers to summons at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations headquarters in Nairobi is Senator Jones Mwaruma, Woman Representative Lydia Haika and Mwatate MP Andrew Mwadime.

Seven members of the County Assembly (MCAs) will also be questioned at Voi Police Station, where they are expected to make statements over the same matter.

The DCI is investigating allegations of incitement following the dispute that erupted in Sagalla in June between illegal herders and residents that led to the death of a 35-year-old farmer.

RETALIATION

The politicians are alleged to have made hate remarks that raised tension in the area.

In what seemed like a retaliatory attack over the murder of the farmer, more than 20 camels were found dead in Kirumbi village a day after the murder incident.

However, Majority Leader at the County Assembly Mr Jason Tuja said they will not be intimidated by the DCI summons.

Mr Tuja alleged the summons are aimed at silencing the county leadership over the heinous crimes perpetrated by the herders.

“The herders must be flushed out because they have become a security threat to our people,” he said.

GRAZING

He denied making any incitement remarks that could have fuelled the dispute.

Other MCAs expected to appear for questioning are Ibrahim Juma, Godwin Kilele, Christopher Mwambingu, Paul Waweru, Geoffrey Mwambi and Haris Keke.

County Commissioner Rhonda Onyancha warned that any leader who incites residents will face the full force of the law.

She asked the county politicians to work with security agencies to seek a lasting solution towards the protracted illegal grazing menace.

“We are working hard to solve this problem. However we will not tolerate anyone who tries to fuel this situation. We will deal with such people,” she warned.

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