NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 27 – Dozens of people are feared dead after fierce fighting between the Gabra and Borana communities in Moyale on Thursday night.
Area District Commissioner Elias Kithaura told Capital News that five people had been confirmed dead by Friday morning, but area residents put the death toll at over 20.
The area has been hit by sporadic clashes between the two communities since November, and the administrator said the government will continue to lead peace efforts in the region to ensure long lasting peace.
“I wouldn’t know how many people have died as a result of the clashes that started in November but what I can confirm is that there was an exchange of fire yesterday (Thursday) that left five people dead,” Kithaura said.
“We have been holding peace meetings between all the tribes in the area before fresh clashes started on Tuesday,” he said.
The inter-clan conflict between the Gabra and Boranas has elicited reactions from area leaders with Moyale MP Mohamed Ali Mohamud accusing the government of laxity and failing to contain the situation.
“Where is the government? This is mainly a spillover from tension in Ethiopia where the Gabra and Borana have been feuding over the years,” he told Capital News on phone.
He urged the government to move fast and stop the ongoing fighting.
“My people are telling me that at least eight people are dead so far and that fierce fighting is ongoing in the bush,” he said.
Mohamud says the latest fighting started on Tuesday after attackers raided Helu area, killed one person and injured a police reservist after burning houses.
“What we are witnessing now is a revenge attack after the raid on Tuesday,” he said.