Police officers attached to West Pokot Governor John Lonyangapuo and his home have been withdrawn.

On Thursday, the West Pokot County boss stormed a road block and forcefully freed a boda-boda rider who had been detained by police along the Kapenguria-Lodwar highway.

Warning

The governor warned Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang'i and Inspector General of Police to train their officers on how to deal with Kenyans or face the wrath of the public.

He had confronted officers at a roadblock and demanded that they free Leonard Powen, who had been shackled against his motorcycle.

The rider was ferrying onions from Ortum to Kapenguria town when the officers flagged him down and detained him for allegedly flouting traffic rules.

Governor Lonyangapuo reprimanded the officers for harassing boda boda operators and expressed concern over illegal roadblocks, which officers were accused of using to harass and demand bribes from motorists.

“This is illegal. How can you handcuff the rider against his motorcycle? You have violated his rights and you must release him unconditionally,” the governor told the officers.

Roadblocks

The officers released the rider and apologised for the incident. He ordered them to remove the spikes and leave the spot.

The officers obliged and left. “What are these 20 roadblocks erected in the county for? This is not Somalia and I’m not going to tolerate any harassment,” he said.

He asked County Police Commander Mathew Kutto to remove illegal roadblocks.

Governor Lonyangapuo said the boda boda business had contributed to peace and security in the area, arguing that many warriors had abandoned rustling and joined the venture.

“You should not play where there is peace. Stop reviving wounds. I don’t want these boys to be frustrated and be forced to go back to the bush,” the governor said.