One person killed in fighting between herders

A police vehicle in Marsabit.

A police vehicle in Marsabit.

Photo credit: Joseph Kanyi | Nation Media Group

One person has been killed and two others critically injured in fighting between herders from rival ethnic groups in North Horr Sub-county.

The violence broke out within the Sibiloi National Park in Madho Dimtu on Wednesday.

North Horr OCPD Mohammed Abdi said fighting erupted when the herders clashed over a grazing zone and watering point for their animals.

"I can confirm that recent clashes caused one death, around two wounded and more 100 sheep and goats stolen. Security officers have since been dispatched to restore calm in the area," Mr Abdi said.

The two casualties are admitted at Kalacha Level 4 Hospital.

More than 100 sheep and goats were stolen during the incident.

Mr Abdi said security officers had been dispatched to beef up security in the area and to recover the livestock.

Strategic zones

As the drought continues in the region after a long dry spell, herders are now to possess strategic zones with pasture and water within the park.

Darate has experienced cycles of violence between nomadic herders from the Dasenaach and Gabbra communities for more than 50 years.

Violence between the two communities is rooted in mistrust that has existed since the 1950s.

The latest scuffle comes only three weeks after the two communities met at Darate Police Post on December 20, 2020 to curb further unrest.

Concerns have been raised about the wave of violence that has become a norm in the area whenever drought is experienced in the region.

In their last meeting, the Dasenaach and Gabbra communities agreed to welcome truce, stoking hopes for an end to decades of constant and escalating ethnic clashes between them.

Hail move

Speaking at Darate Police Post in December, North Horr Deputy County Commissioner Silvester Mwangilu said the move is a good gesture to end longstanding animosity that has threatened to push the two communities to destruction.

He spoke during a peace meeting that was convened by the Strategic Northern Development (SND), Pact-Kenya and funded by the European Union.

The meeting was attended by delegates from the national government administration officers, local politicians and elders from both sides, and which saw the Dasenaach community return 40 stray donkeys belonging to the Gabbra.

The move was ostensibly intended to end a surge in fighting between the communities that had been occasioned by scramble for resources and incitements.

The cease-fire was first raised by the Dasenaach community who said that the decades-long antagonisms have seen them relegated to marginalization and underdevelopment.

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