What you need to know:
- The officers were in pursuit of Pokot bandits who had raided a village in Turkana East and made away with livestock.
- NPS said they had dispatched a contingent of officers to restore normalcy in the already tense region.
- The incident came just three hours after Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua committed to ending the insecurity menace that has plagued bandit-prone areas like Kerio Valley.
Eight police officers, a local chief and two civilians have been killed in a banditry attack in Turkana East, the National Police Service (NPS) has confirmed.
The officers were in pursuit of Pokot bandits who had raided a village in Turkana East and made away with livestock.
NPS said they had dispatched a contingent of officers to restore normalcy in the already tense region.
"The National Police Service regrets to inform on the criminal and cowardly ambush by cattle rustling bandits on innocent members of the public and police officers," the NPS said in a statement.
"A local chief, two members of the public and eight police officers succumbed to the injuries. We have dispatched additional officers to reinforce the troops on the ground in beefing up security in the area and pursue the bandits," said the NPS.
Thirdway Alliance party leader Ekuru Aukot went to social media revealing he lost his sister in the incident and asked President William Ruto to end the insecurity menace in the region.
"I just lost my sister today, together with a chief and several police officers. We will bury them but dear Mr President, kindly fix the insecurity in Turkana East," Mr Aukot said on his social media pages.
Insecurity is rife in the region, with gunslinging criminals even turning their guns on security authorities.
The incident came just three hours after Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua committed to ending the insecurity menace that has plagued bandit-prone areas like Kerio Valley.
He spoke Saturday, at the funeral ceremony of the late Baringo Deputy Governor. Gachagua said he will personally convene a meeting with leaders from the region to chart the way forward.
"This small work of security is my mandate, it's not President's mandate. I will personally call the meeting of Kerio Valley leaders and all security officers and I will be the chairman," he said.
Last month, President Ruto reiterated that elaborate mechanisms are in place to end season-long banditry affecting parts of northern Kenya.
Dr Ruto while speaking in a joint sit-down press meeting with multiple media houses after he was announced winner said the Kenya Kwanza government has a time-bound plan to secure bandit-prone areas.
Dr Ruto noted thousands of people have been affected over the years due to the runaway insecurity situation in Baringo, Kerio Valley, Samburu, Turkana and Marsabit areas.
"We have a time-bound plan to secure bandit-prone areas. We will shortly let the country know what we have in place to secure the lives and protect the people of Kenya," Dr Ruto said.
Ruto had earlier alleged that the Jubilee administration's move to withdraw National Police Reservists (NPR) from bandit-prone areas of the Rift Valley was a ploy to punish him.
The Kenya Kwanza Alliance captain who was speaking during the Presidential Debate in July claimed the government's decision to withdraw the NPR back in 2019 in areas prone to bandit attacks was politically motivated.
"I have even used my personal resources to deal with that situation because I know it was a political agenda. The withdrawal of NPR was an unfortunate act but because it was intended to punish William Ruto,” he alleged during a Presidential debate on July 26.