Police in Igembe North, Meru County, have launched an operation to flush out bandits suspected to be from Turkana County, who shot and injured 10 police officers and a civilian in Makinya on Friday.
General Service Unit (GSU) officers from Mariara, led by Corporal Geoffrey Simiyu, were patrolling the expansive Northern Grazing Zone when they were ambushed by about 300 raiders. Four of the officers were injured.
Anti Stock Theft Unit officers from Bullu rushed to the scene to provide backup but were also waylaid by the attackers, who wounded six of them.
Reports indicated that one of the officers admitted at Maua Methodist Hospital was evacuated to Nairobi for advanced care while the others were responding well to treatment.
Area police boss Apollo Busolo said the officers were ambushed a day after the same raiders shot dead a herdsman and injured two others.
Mr James Karithi Muroki, 23, was fatally wounded as he grazed livestock with Mr Elias Koome, who is being treated at Chogoria Mission Hospital. He was shot in the chin and sustained tongue injuries.
Speaking at Laare Police Station during a crisis meeting, Mr Apollo said the raiders acted unprovoked and that the officers usually patrol the grazing zone frequented by Samburu, Turkana and Meru herders.
He said they first attached on November 4 before two incidents last week.
“We are taking all measures to ensure the area is extensively patrolled. We cannot allow suspects of crime to come here and harass our people,” Mr Busolo said.
“We will ensure people live in peace. We don’t know whether it is about the boundary, sharing of pasture or any political or economical gain.”
He assured residents that police will enhance security so they can carry out their activities without disturbances.