Deputy President (DP) William Ruto has urged security personnel to use force against criminals wreaking havoc in ranches and conservancies in Laikipia.
The DP spoke on Tuesday after holding a high-level security meeting with local administrators including the county commissioners of Samburu and Laikipia and police chiefs, and local
He had made an impromptu visit to Rumuruti in Laikipia West a day after armed herders shot dead Tristan Voorspuy, a co-owner of Sosian Ranch in Laikipia North.
“The government will not allow continued perpetuation of impunity in Laikipia county as everybody is subject to the laws of this country,” he said.
Mr Ruto said: “I urge the security personnel to use force on adamant criminals destroying property. Please do not give room to criminals, they will kill you…ukibembeleza criminals utakuwa marehemu (if you are soft on criminals, you will be killed)”.
He asked security agencies to use every means to restore sanity in the county.
“Do everything possible to restore sanity in Laikipia which is one of the preferred tourism destinations in the country. Drought should not be an excuse to criminal activities,” the DP told security agencies.
He said the government will in the next week deploy General Service Unit officers in Laikipia to add to the 1,380 security personnel already in the county.
“We also intend to add two more armoured police vehicles to aid in security operations in the County,” Mr Ruto said.
He directed Samburu County Commissioner Mohamed Birik and his Laikipia Counterpart Onesmus Kyathia to ensure teenagers found herding animals are intercepted and enrolled in schools.
“The law directs that every child should get access to education,” DP Ruto said.
He warned politicians against incitement, which has been blamed for the invasions in the county.
“Politicians inciting people will face the full force of the law. We can not allow politicians to divide parts of this country and cause chaos,” he said.
Only two local leaders were present in the high level security meeting.
Those present were Senator Godfrey Gitahi Kariuki, Laikipia West Member of Parliament (MP) Wachira Karani and County Assembly speaker Patrick Mariru.
The absence of the Governor Joshua Irungu and other MPs including Woman Representative Jane Appolos raised eyebrows over their commitment to security matters the county.
The DP spent the better part of Tuesday morning in the meeting also attended by police director of operations at vigilance house Mr Benson Kibue.