Tharaka Nithi Residents have fled following a heavy deployment of General Service Unit Police for an operation following the murder of Kamaindi Tharaka-Nithi chief.
Five Suspects have so far been arrested in connection with the murder.
Irate residents cornered, slashed the Chief with pangas and then set him on fire in connection to a prolonged dispute over the murder of a man in 2018.
It is alleged that the residents were angered by the chief’s brother, Gikware Mukengu, who is alleged to have detained several goats belonging to a resident Gitonga Kibuibe, who went missing in December 2018 and whose remains were found in the nearby River Thuci three weeks ago.
The goats had reportedly trespassed into Gikware’s land when Gitonga Kibuibe went to bathe in the river on December 12, 2018, but never returned home. Villager alleged that he was killed by the chief’s brother.
It is alleged that when the chief’s brother declined to release the goats, villagers sought the intervention of Igambang’ombe deputy county commissioner, who reportedly sent the chief to handle the matter.
Before the chief arrived, hundreds of residents stormed Gikware’s home baying for his blood but he managed to escape.
Not aware of what had happened to his brother, the chief went to resolve the dispute but the mob attacked him.
On April 25, 2019, just a day before the remains were buried, the villagers held demonstrations demanding justice for Mr Kibuibe’s family.
They also accused police and the local administration of taking no action on the matter despite the fact that the sons of the chief and the brother had continued to threaten them.
They also claimed that the chief’s sons had a list of people from the village whom they had vowed to kill.