Written by Leonard Wamalwa
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The fire brigade team from Khetia's company laying the water Horse pipes in the Kitale forest in their bid to put off the fire. [Photo/ Leonard Wamalwa]
Two forests in Trans Nzoia County suffered a great loss after fire struck at different times Wednesday and razed down several acres of forest cover in the two forests.
Fire broke up in Kabolet forest in Cherangani constituency at around 3pm while another one had struck at Kitale forest within Kitale town earlier at 1.30pm.
According to the zonal forest manager in charge of the entire Trans Nzoia region Simon Wahome, the fire in Kabolet forest is believed to have been caused by honey harvesters who always enter the forest to harvest honey at night.
Wahome who spoke to West FM on phone said that the fire was started by a piece of wood that was left glowing Tuesday night after the honey harvesters completed their work and left it burning hence spread with time and burned over five acres of the forest.
"The fire was caused by a glowing wood used by honey harvesters who are believed to have entered the forest last night to collect honey and did not put off the fire after their mission," Wahome told West FM.
At the same time the manager revealed that over three acres of forest were destroyed by the fire at the Kitale forest in an incident where criminals who take refuge in the forest are suspected to be behind the incident.
Wahome said that the criminals are said to always hide in the forest where they smoke Bhang and cigarettes and might have dropped the remains of their smoke in the forest which were fanned by the wind that is going on this season.
He has appealed to farmers to be keen and vigilante while preparing their farms this season noting that the season is prone to fires that can easily spread and cause extensive damages.
He also threatened that criminals shall be flushed out of the forest by the forest officers and other security officers who shall soon combine to get rid of such characters within the government forests to enhance security in the area.
Kabolet forest has also been known for a long time to be a haven of criminals of all nature ranging from cattle rustlers and general thugs within Trans Nzoia and Pokot region who hide in the forest after unleashing their terror on innocent residents.
The forest borders West Pokot County that has been known to be affected by cattle thefts for many decades.
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