Are The Revenge Attacks Escalating?
News from Nakuru is scanty and difficult to come by but Kumekucha can confirm that there are some serious clashes going on in the town at the heart of the Rift Valley and the largest security operation since the aborted 1982 coup has now been deployed involving the Kenya Army.
I have been unable to reach our man on the ground but from the information gathered so far, it appears that a revenge attack by mainly members of the Kikuyu tribe, against Luos and Kalenjins living in the Cosmopolitan Nakuru town is what triggered off the whole incident.
Some reports indicate that members of the Kalenjin and Luo re-grouped too quickly (like they were expecting the attack) and chased after the attackers who had burnt houses as well as killed people. Some eyewitnesses claim that policemen stopped them and assured them that they would arrest the whole lot on their own. However this looked unlikely as the policemen were vastly outnumbered by the attackers.
It is not clear at what point the Kenya Army arrived, but it is common knowledge that the Army are mostly trained to kill and fight gun battles rather than to quell riots, which suggests that the security situation in the town must be extremely serious.
It is instructive to note that the clashes in most of the Rift Valley has brought a vast majority of the refugees to Nakuru town and many of the Kikuyu victims who have lost everything have been holed up in the town.
This development is significant because although we have seen clashes in the major city of Nairobi, so far they have been limited to slum areas like Kibera, Mathare and Huruma. In Nakuru we have witnessed for the first time clashes coming into town and involving the middle class. This is certainly very bad news for Kenya and illustrates the fact that despite the optimism from many quarters yesterday when Kibaki and Raila shook hands in front of the press, nobody is addressing the core issues and therefore we need to brace ourselves for the worst. Actually it is becoming increasingly clear by the day that nothing short of Mwai Kibaki’s resignation from the stolen presidency will restore peace in the Rift valley.
Read more about Nakuru violence.