Get to the root of Mt Elgon
THE EAST AFRICAN - Letters
Joseph Mambili, Nairobi
10. March 2008
THE KILLING of more than 10 people at the outskirts of Kitale by a
gang which is claimed to be Sabaot Land Defence Force is chilling
coming as it does at a time when the country is healing.
The recurrent killings, burning of houses and displacement of
people that have gone on in Mt Elgon for long, seem to be
extending to nearby regions. This should not be allowed to go on.
As it is, one would be mistaken to think the region operates under
its own set of rules. How else do you explain the impunity with
which the gangs attack the locals? How is it possible that the
gang retreats to the nearby forest only to return to wipe out
It is indeed easy to rush for quick solutions like sending in the
police to arrest suspected members, kill others and send the rest
to court. However, that may not achieve much unless we get to the
root cause of the killings: Is it land? Or is it a militia gone
out of hand? Who is funding the group? What needs to be done to
weed it out?
The Mt Elgon problem must be taken head on and solved, even if it
means relocating the Minister of Internal Security and top
security officials to the region.