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Provide chiefs with security, union urges

MERU, September 17 – The government has been asked to step up security for chiefs and their assistants, just days after a chief in South Imenti was beaten to death over the weekend.

Officials from the Meru Central branch of the Kenya Union of Civil Servants called on the government Wednesday to arm the chiefs and give them a bodyguard to prevent such incidents from recurring.

“Many government workers, especially chiefs and their assistants are constantly faced with danger in their line of duty,” argued the branch chairman John Gikunda Mwanja, who also proposed that chiefs’ camps be guarded by police officers.

Mikumbune chief Fredrick Kimathi Mburugu, 48, was beaten to death over the weekend and his body set on fire after a stolen chicken was allegedly found in his homestead.

The union branch has since written letters to the District Commissioners of Imenti South, Imenti North and Meru Central asking them to boost security for the civil servants.

Branch treasurer, George Koome Rukaaria, who is also a chief said most of the camps do not have Administration Policemen on guard, thus exposing them to risk.

At the same time, the officials demanded a thorough investigation into Kimathi’s death.

The chief was beaten by a mob of about 50 people, and then set on fire, after he was accused of colluding to steal a chicken in the area. Another man, branded as his ‘accomplice’ was also badly beaten but was saved from death by police officers.

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He is recuperating at the Meru District Hospital.

Meanwhile, on the recent pay increment for civil servants, Gikunda commended the government effort, but called for a uniform raise.

“The clerical officers in groups E, F and G have been sidelined and have been given only Sh300 while those in job groups H, J and above received at least Sh3,000 to Sh6,000.”

“If it is 10 percent, let it be so across the board,” he said.

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