A tense situation unfolded at Lake Nakuru in Nakuru County as Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) rangers found themselves disarmed following a shooting incident in Barut. The altercation resulted in injuries to four individuals, including a Form Two student, raising concerns and prompting investigations into the circumstances surrounding the clash.

According to reports, the incident occurred during a crackdown on alleged illegal fishing activities within Lake Nakuru. KWS officials had observed a group of individuals trespassing into the lake for fishing, which prompted the initiation of an operation to address the issue.

As the patrol team attempted to deter the trespassers, they encountered resistance from another group of individuals who began throwing stones at the officers. In response to the attack, the rangers resorted to opening fire, resulting in injuries to four individuals, including two KWS rangers who were also wounded during the altercation.

The aftermath of the confrontation led to damaged property, including a KWS vehicle, and sparked protests among the local community. Residents demanded the arrest and prosecution of the officers involved, alleging excessive use of force and indiscriminate violence during the operation.

Barut, located near Lake Nakuru National Park, has experienced challenges stemming from the displacement of locals due to the swelling lake. This displacement has led some residents to resort to fishing in the lake, despite it being deemed illegal by KWS due to safety concerns regarding the water’s contamination.

In response to the incident, Deputy County Commissioner Obed Mose assured the public of ongoing investigations and pledged to take appropriate action against the involved officers once the inquiry is concluded. Firearms used by the officers have been confiscated as part of the investigation process.

At Nakuru County Teaching and Referral Hospital, Chief Nursing Officer Alphaxard Kemboi confirmed receiving the injured individuals, noting that two of them would require surgery to remove bullets lodged in their bodies. The injuries sustained included bullet wounds to the thighs and arm.

Local leaders have called for calm among residents as investigations proceed, urging cooperation with authorities to ensure a thorough and fair resolution to the incident.