Detectives have launched a manhunt for a Ward representative in Marsabit after a county government vehicle was found with four suspects accused of arming locals.
The Uran ward legislator Halkano Konso went into hiding, after detectives seized the vehicle with County Government’s registration numbers and arrested the four occupants.
According to police, the vehicle was allegedly under his control at the time of the arrest. An AK 47 rifle with ten rounds of ammunition was recovered.
“BPU officers who were on targeted patrol following a tip-off from members of the local community, spotted a county government vehicle registration number 10CG016A suspected to be distributing supplies to bandits in the thickets of Funan Qumbi,” the Directorate of Criminal Investigations said in a Tweet.
The MCA is linked to arming of bandits, who are in turn used to cause havoc in the troubled border area of Turbi-Sololo.
Of the four arrested, detectives said two are Marsabit County officials, in a shocking revelation that the violence in the area might have political links like earlier indicated by Interior CS Fred Matiang’i.
Police have asked the county legislator to surrender himself to the Turbi police station for questioning.
The County government of Marsabit in a statement acknowledged the incident in which one of their vehicles attached to the department of Water, Environment and Natural resources had been impounded at the Turbi police station.
The County government said the vehicle was being used to ferry a driver and water technician on field assignment.
They were to repair boreholes in Bori, Badanrero and Elle Borr areas on Friday.
“We are yet to obtain information on the reasons why the vehicle and our officers were detained. We are however in communication with the Kenya police officers based in Turbi and we are seeking updates and interventions from the county security team, ” reads the statement.
In recent weeks, violence has been reported in the area surrounding Turbi, Sololo, and its environs following inter-community clashes.
The skirmishes are said to be between the Borana and Gabbra community in an alleged conflict for the scramble of resources like water and pasture.
Matiang’i last month warned political leaders against sowing seeds of discord and conflict and arming locals with weapons for mere political mileage at the expense of peace.
Several vernacular FM stations in the area are also under constant monitoring by the communication authority of Kenya (CAK) for allegedly inciting violence.
In recent weeks, two people have lost their lives in the clashes that saw five other people arrested by police for allegedly inciting violence.
During the clashes, suspected to be part of retaliatory attacks by members of both communities, 250 cows were stolen in Funan Nidhaa area, 500 goats were stolen in Funan Qumbi, and 195 goats were stolen in Turbi area.