The Baragoi Police Massacre:The day our police officers were let down by our own Government,after been mowed down by heavily armed bandits,in Suguta valley,Baragoi,in Samburu.

The Baragoi police massacre ,in Suguta valley-a valley of death-where 41 police officers were mowed down by heavily armed cattle rustlers ,in what appeared to be a well orchestrated ambush on November 10.Our deepest condolences go to the young ,brave police officers who were killed in Samburu.From most accounts ,they were led like sheep to the slaughter house ,outgunned ,out manned and out thought.

It is impossible to think of any subject other than the slaughter of these police officers.We were waiting for the government to call for a national day of mourning ,but,alas it wasn’t the case.This is one of the worst ,if not the worst attack on the police force in Kenya’s history.It is an atrocity ,a massacre of young officers just out of their teens,and,a national disgrace of unparalled proportion

The families of the bereaved must feel the pain of indifference as well as the huge loss of their sons who gave their lives to make Kenya a safe place.

The wasting of young lives ,the disrespect for the law and law enforcers is totally unacceptable .And,these deaths are hard to fathom.This is unnecessary and unacceptable loss of live ,and,it demonstrates a fundamental problems in the security sector and in that the leaders have badly let down our officers.It is unacceptable that the forces of law and order can be handled this way.It took 3 days for police helicopter to collect their dead bodies from Suguta valley,while it took a couple of hours to evacuate a group of women who were stranded in Tanzania,after an accident.

We must also ask hard questions as to how this could happen ,so soon after the Tana violence ,where 12 police officers were killed in similar circumstances.Too many police officers have died in the last few months in Tana river,Mombasa,Likoni and now Baragoi;far more than Kenya defence forces lost in Somalia.This is an opportunity for the government and Kenyans in general ,to let those who daily put their lifes on line of fire know that their sacrifices are highly valued.

And,it is scary for we ordinary Kenyans ,for if the police cannot protect themselves ,how can we expect them to protect us?

Kenyans love to blame our poorly paid ,ill-trained police for everything that goes wrong with public safety.But,what have we ever given them?Have we even showed their families compassion when they are killed in the line of duty?The police service is a demoralised ,neglected outfit that is even denied meagre salary increment that the government promised them.

What happened in Baragoi was an indicative of the ……..badly equipped ,inadequately trained ,poorly paid and managed force.These officers who were killed by heavily armed bandits in a well choreographed ambush in Suguta valley ,were inexperienced and poorly equipped ,leaving them vulnerable to the powerful sniper rifles.They were on a mission to recover some 450 heads of cattle stolen from the Samburu by suspected Turkana raiders some months ago.And,it was unfortunate that the officers’ bodies were left uncollected for days even as the country woke up to the shocking incident.

The reaction of the government was rather wanting and tepid ,and ,yet another disgrace .It has not occurred to anyone that perhaps we should hold a day of prayer for the families and souls of those poor officers .Nor are the bereaved families being visited and comforted by the leaders of a grateful nation.This is a shameful attempt to carry on as if nothing happened.


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