A Senior clergyman with African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa has been arrested in Maragua District over his association with the unregistered Mungiki Sect.
The clergyman was thrown into the cells on Monday afternoon moments after he presented himself to the police to inquire why he was being sought.
Security sources said the clergyman was being sought by police after he allegedly attended several Mungiki sect meetings where oathing was done. Confirming the arrest, Maragua District Police Chief Mrs Rebecca Mulle said police are interested to know more about the sect from the priest. She said the police had information on how the priest at one of the sect meetings was given water and a piece of meat during an oathing session.
Mulle said the force will continue to flush out Mungiki sect followers from their hideouts and appealed to the members of the public to assist police with information. In Laikipia, self-confessed Mungiki sect members over the weekend continued to surrender to the police as the February 11 dead-line approaches.
The government last week promised not to prosecute the sect members who surrender by February 11 warning of stern action against those who fail to own up.
On Sunday, 12 more members of the sect surrendered to the police in the district bringing to 75 the number of members who have owned up since the crack-down on them started three weeks ago.
Three members of the Mungiki sect were yesterday arrested by the police after they went to seek political asylum at the British High Commission in Nairobi.
The commission's Press Attache, Mr Mark Norton, said the three were arrested for belonging to a proscribed organisation. He added that they had claimed they were facing political persecution from the government.
They were informed that the British Government would not grant them asylum as they belonged to an illegal organisation. The commission called the police who arrested them.
Meanwhile, Internal Security minister Chris Murungaru said the sect's members still had 30 days from January 11 to surrender to the police.
"Since my first appeal to the sect members to voluntarily surrender to the government, a number of them have surrendered and are now free to lead normal lives," said Dr Murungaru.
He asked all others who wished to surrender to report to their nearest police station or administrative office.
Meanwhile, the Catholic Church and the Centre for Conflict Resolution have urged humanitarian agencies to donate food and building material to the victims of the recent Molo violence.
The Nakuru Catholic Diocesan Justice and Peace and Commission executive officer, Mr Ernest Murimi, said he visited the area with Vicar General Dominic Kimengich, Fr Augustine Chumo and Fr Peter Mucheru and counted 76 burnt houses.
Mr Murimi said the group visited 22 farm units where individual families lost as many as 10 houses.
The raiders, he said, torched 10 houses in the compound of Mr Richard Ndungu'u and another seven in Mr Njoroge Kamau's homestead. The centre's executive director, Mr F.M. Apollos said his organisation had established that 163 houses were burnt down and 44 others looted.
"The victims also need the assurance of sustainable peace to enable them to return to their homes." Mr. Apollos said.
He commended the police to taking quick action to restore calm and for recovering stolen animals.
Police have arrested 53 suspected members of the outlawed Mungiki sect in connection with Monday evening's attack in Nairobi's city centre.
Six people, including a police officer, were injured in the attack targetting new matatu clerks on Dandora's route 42.
Police also impounded the Matatu minibus registration number KAJ 703 M which is alleged to have ferried the sect members to the Kenya National Archives stage before the attack.
Nairobi police boss Stephen Kimenchu said the assailants were arrested from their hideouts in Dandora and Kariobangi where they fled to after the incident.
Sect members who had been managing operations at the terminus were forced to leave after the Government launched a crack down on them recently.
Kimenchu said the new managers did not inform police as required about the change of guard so that security could be provided for an anticipated retaliation act by the outlawed group.
He said that among those arrested is the owner of the vehicle.
Mungiki chairman Maina Njenga and national co-ordinator Ndura Waruinge are still in hiding.
The Government ordered the crack down on Mungiki early this month after 23 people were killed by sect members in Nakuru and Nyeri.
An unknown number of the Mungiki adherents took over sections of the Nairobi's city centre on Monday when they attacked civilians along Accra Road.
Witnesses said the attackers had concealed their weapons in their heavy jackets and queued like other commuters waiting in line to board the matatu.
Members of the outlawed Mungiki sect yesterday took over a section of the city centre and attacked civilians seriously injuring six people including a police officer.
The Mungiki adherents descended on Accra Road at 5.45 pm in what is suspected to be an attack on the matatu clerks of Dandora route 42.
Nairobi Provincial Police Officer, Stephen Kimenchu, said the sect members wanted to interfere with transport in the area. The injured were rushed to Kenyatta National Hospital and were admitted.
An eye-witness, David Mutua, said an unknown number of sect members disembarked from a convoy of four mini-buses outside the Kenya National Archives.
He said the adherents who donned heavy jackets and caps then mixed with crowds of hundreds of commuters who were going home after the day?s work.
Mutua said attackers then simultaneously drew new machetes wrapped in papers.
He said one of them shouted, "Let?s kill them!" and the group descended on the commuters waiting in line to board the matatus.
The first victim was woman who was slashed on the back.
A second was also attacked who police said sustained cuts and a third person was hit by blunt object and was rushed to hospital in a coma.
Hundreds of people fled from the scene when they saw the bloodletting while business came to a standstill.
Mutua said a courageous man picked up a stone and knocked down one of the sect members prompting the rest of the gang to drop their weapons and flee.
Flying Squad police officers were the first to arrive at the scene and repulsed the sect members who fled towards Grogan Road.
Central OCPD, Mr Japheth Koome, said a police inspector was injured while picking up the machetes and swords. Witnesses, however, claimed that his fingers had been cut during the scuffle.
Koome said the police had spread out from the scene of the crime in a bid to arrest the sect members from their hiding places.
He said the police will pursue the sect members relentlessly until they are brought to justice.
By 8 pm relative calm had returned as police in combat and civilian clothes were patrolling Nairobi streets.
The Mungiki National co-ordinator, Ndura Waruinge is on the run after he slipped through a police dragnet when detectives attempted to arrest him.
Waruinge, who the police have been looking for since members of the outlawed sect hacked to death 16 people in Nakuru early this month made good his escape when he jumped over the fence of his in-laws compound.
According to a reliable police source Wariunge had sought refuge at his in-laws Ndaragua home since police started hunting him and the sects National Chairman, Maina Njenga own.
Waruinge has been reading papers and monitoring from his in-laws residence much to the chagrin of detectives who have been hunting for him.
The source revealed that detectives who had been tipped on the outlawed sect's hideout raided the homestead only to find that he had escaped seconds before they arrived.
The sect leader allegedly jumped over a fence just before the officers arrived.
A massive manhunt was immediately launched to track down the two sect leaders.
Police arrested Waruinge's brother when they raided his ancenstral home last week.
Police in Molo yesterday raided the home of the national co-ordinator of the outlawed Mungiki sect, Mr Ndura Waruingi, and arrested five sect followers.
Waruingi was not among those arrested when the security personnel struck Mona village at dawn. But his younger brother Isaac Ngugi was flushed out of his house and arrested.
The policemen, armed with guns, combed the village searching houses for members of the sect before they left with the suspects.
Also arrested was a local Mungiki chairman, Mr Simon Karanja Wanyeki, who was ambushed at his Karirikania village in Muchorui.
Local police boss, Mr Herbert Khaemba, and the head of the CID, Inspector Nyali Munga led the team that is cracking down on Mungiki followers in the area.
Meanwhile, more than 50 suspected Mungiki sect members charged with bailable offences have been denied bond by a Nairobi court.
The suspects who were charged with preparation to commit a felony, were denied bond by Makadara Senior Principal Magistrate Charles Rinjeu since Monday.
Prosecuting, Inspector Lawrence Njenga objected to their bond applications citing insecurity outcry by the public in city estates and matatu termini within Nairobi area.
Separately, 22 people, among them a woman were yesterday charged before a Nakuru court with being members of the outlawed Mungiki sect.
They denied the charge when they appeared before Principal Magistrate Haroun Bomett. Nine of them were from Nakuru town, 12 from Nyahururu and one from Njoro.
Clad in dirty clothes, the outlawed sect members looked composed as the charges were read out. They denied being members of Mungiki saying they knew it was an illegal society.
A war of words broke out yesterday over the outlawed Mungiki sect, with the internal security minister vowing the crackdown against members will continue - and the movement's leader daring the police to carry out their shoot-to-kill orders.
Mr Ndura Waruinge, who claims to speak for the sect, vowed Mungiki would retaliate "tit-for-tat against anyone who wages war on us".
He also said the sect would seek help from outside Kenya to fight back.
Minister Chris Murungaru yesterday warned police commissioner Philemon Abong'o against any laxity in combating Mungiki, which has been blamed for a string of murders and attacks.
Dr Murungaru said: "The police commissioner has been given express instructions to deal firmly with Mungiki followers and any laxity will not be tolerated."
He dismissed Mungiki threats of war against the Government.
"The government won't be cowed by such hollow threats from Mungiki and when they say that they will come with fire, they should know that we have more superior firepower than them," Dr Murungaru told a Press conference in his office.
The countrywide crackdown had seen 239 suspects rounded up by yesterday, the minister said.
One hundred and seventy had been arrested in Rift Valley, 37 in Central and 32 in Nairobi provinces.
Dr Murungaru said a further 26 members had surrendered in Nakuru following his amnesty to all militia members.
At the same time, Dr Murungaru reiterated that the earlier order to shoot-on-sight members of the sect still stood.
However, Mungiki leader Ndura Waruinge denouncing the shoot-to-kill order claimed yesterday the organisation would seek help from outside the country to fight back.
The sect's national coordinator added: "We warn that if they apply the shoot-to-kill order, we too may be forced to retaliate in kind, that is shoot-to-kill method."
He poured cold water on the Government's amnesty, claiming his group had not committed any crime, and he echoed other leaders' comments that police should not prevent people alleged to be Mungiki members from manning matatu [commuter] routes unless they gave them alternative employment.
Mr Waruinge said he saw no need to contact the police "as I have told them all about Mungiki in the past".
He alleged the recent killings in Nakuru were instigated by senior government officials seeking political gain and he drew a parallel between the public parading of Mungiki suspects in Nakuru and Nairobi to the infamous Mwakenya trials, in which suspects were arrested, forced to confess to being anti-establishment and tried the same day.
"Narc should be wary of taking us back to the single party era," he said.
He claimed a Cabinet minister and several leading Narc and Kanu politicians were among the four million members and financiers of Mungiki "who should be the last people to point accusing fingers at us".
He spoke as Embakasi MP David Mwenje tried to distance himself from Mungiki and denied supporting the sect members who man matatu routes in Dandora estate, Nairobi, where he addressed them on Sunday.
In retracting his support for the outlaws, he said he supported the Government in its crackdown on sect members, including those operating in Dandora.
During his Press conference at Parliament Building, where he was accompanied by Starehe MP Maina Kamanda, Mr Mwenje accused the Daily Nation of misquoting him.
He said he only supported the work of "those young men manning matatu routes in Dandora who are doing a good job but who are not Mungiki."
A visibly angry Mr Mwenje continued: "By the name of God who created me, I never said those words written in the Nation newspaper and I need an apology tomorrow otherwise I will sue them and they will pay me more than Biwott was paid".
Mr Mwenje claimed the report was calculated to bring him into collision with Kenyans and the church, who were bitter about the sect.
Mr Kamanda said Narc MPs from Nairobi had agreed to have groups like Mungiki whose youths were "doing a good work" to "change their names and call themselves vigilante groups."
Gangs of sect members had rioted in Dandora on Saturday, paralysing public transport. A man claiming to be one of the leaders of the sect, Mr Mohamed Murimi, said Mungiki would not relent in its attempts to take control of matatu routes.
Mr Mwenje's comments the following day, which were tape recorded, included:
"We have assured them that there will be no problem on the road. Security is guaranteed. I have also talked to the police and they have also assured me of the guarantee that nobody will harass them.
"In any case, the so-called Mungiki in Dandora are not actually the Mungiki that creates havoc. These are actually young men who are actually assisting them in the matatu stages; that is helping them in manning.
"It is not like the Mungiki of Nakuru, which is killing. This one is actually bringing peace in Dandora. And I must say I am actually happy with them. I don't even know why they are referred to as Mungiki because these are actually young men employed by the owners of the matatus."
Asked to comment on Mr Mwenje's remarks, security minister Dr Murungaru said yesterday that the MP would be dealt with internally by the party if it were established that he publicly supported Mungiki.
Such utterances would be unfortunate from a party member, given the determination of the Government to wipe out Mungiki and similar gangs, he added.
Defiant Mungiki adherents yesterday warned that any attempt by the police to crack down on them would be avenged, as police in Nyandarua District arrested 15 hard-core followers of the sect believed to have taken part in the Nakuru killings a week ago.
The outlawed sect members said that for any one Mungiki member killed by police, they would indiscriminately kill 10 people in revenge.
The Mungiki members, who allegedly ordered all matatu operators on route numbers 32, 36, 41 and 42 (Dandora-city centre) not to operate yesterday, vowed they will continue manning the termini.
They challenged the Government to provide alternative employment for them and fulfil their promises to the public instead of engaging in cracking down on them.
The adherents told journalists at Dandora's Stage 41, where they have camped, that they were ready to die in their fight for control of matatu termini.
"If they kill us, we will kill residents. We are ready to die. Whatever happens, we will stay here. Mungiki is unshakeable and will not be exterminated. We are ready to fight the Government if they dare confront us," the defiant sect members declared.
The members of the group, which has been implicated in hacking to death 20 people in Nakuru and Murang'a, blamed the problem currently dogging the matatu industry on the Matatu Welfare Association (MWA) chairman, Dickson Mbugua, whom they accused of inciting the Government against them. The declaration comes a day after touts (Kamjesh ) engaged the Mungiki adherents in running battles on Friday evening before anti-riot police moved in and dispersed the fighting groups.
Matatu operations between Dandora and the city were disrupted following the skirmishes and commuters were forced to walk long distances to board vehicles along the Outer Ring road.
Despite patrols by police in two Land-Rovers and a Toyota Land-Cruiser, the Mungiki adherents remained at Stage 41 as matatu operators kept their vehicles parked.
In Nyandarua, a gang of 15 Mungiki people, including one woman, was intercepted on Friday night at Ol-Joro-Orok, 20 km from Nyahururu town, having walked all the way by night to avoid detection, police said.
A total of 23 people were killed last weekend in an orgy of violence that left Flamingo and Kimathi estates in Nakuru reeling in shock. One of the arrested suspects had injuries suspected to have been incurred during the Sunday night attack.
He had deep cuts in the face and right arm that were dressed, and he claimed to have been referred to Nyahururu District Hospital from Nakuru.
The Nakuru OCPD, Joel Langat, said the group had carried their injured colleague all the way, but on arrival in Ol-Joro-Orok, they were seen seeking medical attention and police were notified.
On Thursday, detectives from Kasarani police station led by the OCPD, Simeon Kipkeu, recovered the sect's paraphernalia including what is considered the sect's holy book from a two roomed bunker.
A banned sect accused of mass killings said on Sunday that Kenya's new government would only end an upsurge in gang bloodshed by offering jobs and a decent life to poor people who might otherwise turn to violent crime.
Main Njenga, self-styled spiritual leader of the shadowy Mungiki organisation, added in an interview with Reuters that a police crackdown on his members was futile because they were too numerous and well entrenched in the country's economy.
''You cannot fight Mungiki because you will be fighting Kenya,'' he said by telephone. ''How can you crush something that has been there for 17 years in a day or two? It is impossible.''
''The crackdown is unfair and is not the solution. Dialogue is far more important, so that our people can be given farms.''
Mungiki, ''multitude'' in the language of the Kikuyu, the largest tribe, groups thousands of male youths, many of them former street children or people mired at the bottom of society by an economy in its worst state since independence in 1963.
It started as a religious movement in 1987 when Njenga saw a vision in which, he says, God ordered him to lead his people out of bondage. It recruits mostly from the Kikuyu and is backed by the financial clout of its own network of minibus businesses.
Slum dwellers say it is instils fear and respect in a given community by promoting archaic Kikuyu spiritual rituals, like taking snuff, swearing tribal oaths and wearing dreadlocks, that capture the imagination of impoverished youths.
The group was banned in March 2002 after police blamed it for a spate of knife and spear killings. But it has remained active and its members were accused by police of hacking to death 21 people in Nakuru town north of Nairobi on January 5.
The killings were some of the worst violence in the African country in months, presenting the new National Rainbow Coalition (NARC) government with its first security challenge.
There has been no suggestion that Njenga was personally involved in the killings but Internal Security Minister Chris Murungaru said all Mungiki members and leaders would be dealt with mercilessly if they did not surrender to the authorities.
Njenga said he was not in hiding but did not elaborate on his response to the government's surrender call other than to say the crackdown was misguided and would in any case fail.
''I would like to tell them that it (crushing Mungiki) is not easy. It is a very difficult task. We are in every village.''
Murungaru said the Nakuru killings happened after residents tried to eject Mungiki members from bus stops, accusing them of running protection rackets and forcing them to pay higher fares.
Njenga said he had no personal knowledge of the incident but it had followed days of what he called violent provocations against Mungiki members including unspecified killings.
He said it was possible that some Mungiki members had taken part in the killings on January 5 after being paid money by politicians with an interest in destroying Mungiki.
''I am not for what happened in Nakuru. Whatever happened in Nakuru can be a problem in the whole country because as much as the youths become idle they can be misused by any politician.''
''I just want the government to address the issue of unemployment and job opportunities. As much as they are flushing out Mungiki people from stages (bus stops) they should address the question of giving those people work.''
''Mungiki members are working on buses because they have no other way of making money. They are ready to be moved out if only they can be shown where to go to get proper jobs.''
The Government yesterday issued tough directives against the Mungiki sect including the shooting on sight of its members who resist arrest.
Rift Valley PC Peter Raburu also ordered the immediate demolition of the Mungiki shrine at their operational head-quarters in Ng?arua Division of Laikipia District.
The PC additionally ordered for a country-wide man-hunt for all Mungiki leaders especially the national chairman Njenga Maina so that they can face criminal charges over the recent killings.
Raburu wondered why members of the sect banned last year were still criss-crossing the country unleashing terror on innocent Kenyans.
The PC said the sect has no respect for the laws of the country as they kill without any reason or provocation.
The PC talking to the leaders at Nyahururu town before proceeding to Karandi where the sect is based.
Mr Raburu was accompanied by high-ranking security personnel including the Rift Valley PPO, Mr Alex Rono and Laikipia District Commissioner, Mr Eliud Parsankul.
Matatu owners told the PC that some of their fleets have abandoned some routes out of fear of being attacked by the followers.
Such routes include Nakuru and Karatina. They said the sect members now take drugged snuff and bhang in a bid to transform themselves into fearless barbaric grouping.
Meanwhile, the Catholic church has challenged the new Government to honour its promise of safe-guarding the security of all Kenyans.
Kenya Episcopal Conference (KEC) chairman archbishop John Njue called on the Government to immediately review the security situation in the whole country and re-assure Kenyans they are safe.
Elsewhere, the Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC) said from mid-2001 it had documented the killing of at least 59 Kenyans including some Mungiki sect adherents, the maiming of scores and the destruction of property in violence attributed to the out-lawed sect.
The Commission expressed fears that the kind of the violence which left 16 people dead in Nakuru might get out of control unless the Government took tough measures including disarmament and outlawing all militia groups within the shortest time possible.
?The violence raises issues of national security because its application is not only confined to the struggle for control of the public service vehicle industry," KHRC said in a statement.
Consequently, said KHRC, for an end to the problem the national security organs will have to do more than simply increasing security and arresting suspects.
Another lobby group, the Citizens Against Violence, asked the Narc Government to enforce the ban on Mungiki sect and to put in place sound internal security measures to control inter-group conflicts which may lead to national and regional crisis.
Elsewhere, a private investigator has pointed out that the Mungiki motto is to instil fear in the people so that they may gain respect.
"Mungiki believes that for them to gain respect among the Kenyan public, they must instil fear and that is why they will murder people in cold blood," he said.
The investigator also claimed some of the Mungiki members are either police officers or police informers.
Meanwhile, leaders from Western Province yesterday protested the killings in Nakuru.
The leaders urged the new Government to effect last year's ban on militia groups in the country to ensure maximum security of citizens.
The clergy said it was unbelievable that even after the ban of the militia groups, the Mungiki sect members had continued to unleash terror on innocent wananchi.
The clergymen expressed fear that the sect might transform into a bigger armed group to be used by politicians and cause political instability in the country.
They appealed to the Government to move fast and contain activities of the sect before they claim lives of more innocent Kenyans.
Immediate former Nakuru town MP David Manyara, businessman Zakayo Maina Waweru and a matatu operator Mr Njoroge Kariuki were yesterday reportedly arrested and interrogated in connection with the weekend violence.
Separately, police in Nakuru yesterday launched a manhunt for three top leaders of the outlawed Mungiki sect who allegedly masterminded the massacre of 19 people in Nakuru.
At the same time, detectives recovered a home-made gun capable of firing and arrested three more suspects as a crackdown on members of the sect extended to neighbouring districts.
Police were looking for the three matatus allegedly used to ferry the killers to three estates on the night of terror.
Nakuru police boss Joel Langat and the investigating team led by CID chief Jonathan Chelule told a press conference that those arrested will face murder charges.
Langat said the three Mungiki leaders at large co-ordinated and organised the killings from an operations base in Engachura.
He disclosed that the sect leaders were well-known people and have even appeared in print and electronic media, issuing press statements.
The police chief said the total number suspects in custody are 53 excluding the former Nakuru Town MP David Manyara, businessmen Zakayo Maina and Joseph Njoroge Kariuki alias Bamazu.
In Molo, 12 Mungiki suspects have been arrested as the crackdown on the sect members intensified.
The security officers also recovered swords and paraphernalia associated with the sect in Elburgon town.
Molo deputy police boss, Mr Peter Katam said the suspects were ambushed in the middle of a meeting on Tuesday evening.
"We got a tip-off from members of the public that Mungiki were meeting and our officers rushed to the scene", he said.
The 12 who are being held at Elburgon police station will be arraigned in court when investigations are completed.
Police declared war on Mungiki yesterday as the number of those killed in two attacks by members of the outlawed sect rose to 23.
Police Commissioner Philemon Abong'o ordered his field commanders countrywide to arrest and prosecute Mungiki followers, who have been blamed for the murder of 14 in Nakuru Town on Sunday and another two in Murang'a District.
Seven members of the sect were killed in Nakuru. "Three were lynched by the public while four were shot dead by police,'' Mr Abong'o said in a statement signed by police spokesman King'ori Mwangi.
The latest killing occurred at Kahuro in Murang'a District when about 50 members of the sect attacked the home of Mr Nicholas Kuria Ndegwa and killed him on Monday night.
Mr Abong'o spoke as a General Service Unit (GSU) platoon was dispatched to Nakuru town to boost security. The GSU personnel, who arrived in the town on Monday evening from their camp at Jolly Farm area in Molo, will assist regular police in maintaining order.
Officers in charge of the GSU men yesterday attended a security meeting convened by the Nakuru Divisional Police Commander Mr Joel Lang'at.
Police were holding 81adherents of the Mungiki sect for their role in the weekend violence.
Three other people, including the immediate former Nakuru Town MP David Manyara were picked up by police for interrogation on Monday afternoon.
Also arrested were Mr Zakayo Maina Waweru, who contested the Langa Langa civic seat on a Kanu ticket during the just concluded General Election, and Mr Njoroge Bumasu, the chairman of Mololine Services Limited.
The three men were taken to Central Police Station but were later in the evening transferred to different stations.
Mr Lang'at said police had crucial leads regarding those who sponsored the violence. One of the suspects confessed to having hacked seven people. Another sect member who had escaped with a gunshot wound was arrested yesterday in the town's outskirts where he was hiding. He was cornered after police were tipped off by the public.
The police boss said his men recovered paraphernalia belonging to the sect members at a quarry in the town. Among the items was a booklet entitled "Mungiki: The Unshakable Foundation - Freedom, Justice and Prosperity" which bore a portrait of sect leader Maina Njenga.
There were also some snuff containers and coloured walking sticks, a tie, a simi and a badge the words: "On His Majesty's Service" emblazoned on it.
Two National Rainbow Coalition (Narc) leaders in Nakuru town, who were arrested on Monday for allegedly inciting residents of Kivumbini, Lake View and other residential areas to violence in protest of the attacks were released from custody in the evening and ordered to report back to police yesterday morning.
They were Mr William Ating'a and Mr Philemon Ochieng who is the councillor-elect for Kivumbini ward.
Mr Ating'a told the Nation that he was placed in the same cell with the Mungiki suspects, 21 of whom were still nursing injuries which they sustained after they were beaten up by members of the public before being handed over by the police.
Meanwhile, 17 people injured in the orgy of violence that rocked Nakuru Town on Sunday were yesterday recuperating in hospital as bereaved families pleaded with the government to help them meet the burial costs.
Nakuru Divisional Police Commander said his officers had managed to identify bodies of 10 residents who were killed in the violence and those of five Mungiki sect adherents.
Doctors at various hospitals said most of the patients were out of danger.
Twelve of the injured were admitted to the Rift Valley Provincial General Hospital, two at Nakuru Nursing Home, two at Pine Breeze Hospital and one at Valley Hospital.
The provincial hospital's medical superintendent, Dr Sammy Yego, told the Nation that the 12 patients were responding well to treatment.
He said doctors had stitched all the victims who had panga [machete] cuts on their heads and limbs. The victims, all male, were in the hospital's ward seven.
Two others at the Nakuru Nursing Home said that their condition had improved.
"The man was in a critical condition when he was brought here on Sunday night but his condition is now satisfactory. The woman has also improved and she could be discharged any time from now," Mrs Maina said.
A doctor at Valley Hospital said an employee of the Catholic Diocese of Nakuru, Mr Christopher Abbas, who was taken there on Monday morning was responding well to treatment.
Meanwhile, an air of gloom still hung over Kimathi and Flamingo estates which bore the brunt of the attacks.
Yesterday, relatives and friends of the victims held meetings as they sought ways of raising money to meet the hospital bills and mortuary costs following injuries and death of their kin.
"We need all the assistance we can get to meet the funeral costs and other needs of the families," said Mr Mustafa Munyi, a relative of Chrispo Karoki one of those at Kimathi estate.
Mr Nelson Shebasinya, 35, who lost both his 60-year-old father Joash Shebasinya and 20-year-old brother Boniface in the attacks also made the same appeal.
Ms Deborah Ambale of Nation Media Group's Advertising Department was among those bereaved. She lost her younger brother Saul Likuyi, 26, who was murdered by the gang as he rushed out to rescue his elderly neighbour John Kamotu who was attacked by the gang outside his house in Kimathi estate.
Kenya said Monday that 15 people were killed in gang violence in the past two days in the first security test for the government of newly-elected President Mwai Kibaki.
The killings in the central town of Nakuru came less than a week after Kibaki was sworn in following a largely peaceful election campaign that marked the end of President Daniel arap Moi's 24-year rule.
Members of the Mungiki sect, a banned quasi-religious group, clashed with residents in the town of Nakuru in one of the worst outbreaks of violence in Kenya since members of the gang hacked more than 20 people to death last March.
Clashes broke out after residents attempted to eject Mungiki gangs from bus stations, accusing them of running protection rackets that force them to pay higher fares.
Newly-appointed national security minister Chris Murungaru said residents had sought to chase away the Mungiki, having associated them with the KANU party, which suffered a crushing defeat at the polls after 39 years in power.
"The new government will not tolerate private militias who threaten peace," Murungaru told a news conference.
Murungaru said Mungiki killed nine people in Nakuru, 85 miles northwest of the capital Nairobi, on Sunday and another person in another town near the city Monday.
He said police killed two members of Mungiki on Sunday and arrested 38 members of the group which espouses what it describes as traditional beliefs of the Kikuyu, Kenya's biggest tribe. Police said three other people later died in hospital.
Residents, who later held street demonstrations in Nakuru town to protest against the killings, said Mungiki members were breaking into houses and slashing people indiscriminately at night.
"I had my children saying dad Mungiki is coming close the door. But they broke the door and slashed me in the head and cut my hand," said one man recovering in a hospital bed.
Officials said they had instructed police to shoot any Mungiki member on sight.
"I am telling the police that any Mungiki found on the way please, please, do not spare anybody, kill them and shoot them," said Peter Raburu, a senior government administrator for the Nakuru region.
Mungiki was outlawed in March 2002 after its mostly unemployed and dreadlocked members hacked to death more than 20 people using knives and clubs in a Nairobi slum.
The group continued to operate and was perceived by some Kenyans to be associated with Moi's KANU party after it said it was supporting the party's presidential candidate Uhuru Kenyatta, who lost to Kibaki at the polls.
Police have arrested 38 people in a crackdown on a religious sect involved in fighting for control of bus stops in two central Kenyan towns, the new head of the country's internal security said Monday.
National Security Minister Christopher Murungaru, who was sworn in Monday with the other members of President Mwai Kibaki's week-old government, said 12 people have been killed since Sunday when members of the outlawed Mungiki sect attacked minibus operators in Nakuru, 135 kilometers (84 miles) northwest of Nairobi.
Mungiki members killed nine people, and police killed two sect members while trying to restore order, Murungaru said. A twelfth person was killed Monday when Mungiki members attacked minibus operators in Muranga, 60 kilometers (38 miles) north of the capital. It was not clear whether the two indicents were related.
However, a former Mungiki member, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the sect, which was outlawed in March, no longer existed and the deaths were a result of fighting among the minibus operators in the two towns.
Minibuses &Mac247; known as matatus &Mac247; are the main form of public transport in Kenya, earning owners millions of shillings a day. In the past year, Mungiki members have fought with minibus owners over control of bus stops in a number of Kenyan towns.
Mungiki is believed to have thousands of adherents, all drawn from the Kikuyu, Kenya's largest tribe. Members pray facing Mount Kenya, which the Kikuyu traditionally believed to be the home of their supreme diety. The sect also has encouraged respect for traditions like female genital mutilation and using tobacco snuff.
Speaking at his first press briefing, Murungaru said the new government would "do everything possible" to get rid of the "Mungiki menace" and to ensure that matatu operators are not harrassed in a business vital to the Kenyan economy.
At least three people were killed yesterday in Nakuru town where a group of matatu (commuter taxi) touts engaged in a day-long fight with members of the banned Mungiki sect.
One sect member was shot dead by police. One, wielding a machette, had attacked an officer. Another Mungiki member was shot by the police but escaped arrest.
The fight took place in Langa Langa and Mwariki estates where matatu touts invaded several houses occupied by Mungiki adherents and set ablaze household goods as their owners fled.
The touts, armed with machettes and clubs, joined police in hunting for the sect members who fled towards Njoro and Free Area in the outskirts of the town.
Transport between the estates and town was disrupted as matatu drivers and touts abandoned their vehicles to pursue the sect members.
The other two dead were touts, whose names were given as Kahiga and Joel. They were attacked at Lake View Estate by members of the Mungiki sect. Kahiga, who had deep machette cuts, died at Nakuru Nursing Home where he was rushed by his colleagues.
The third victim, a member of the Mungiki sect, was killed by the touts at Ndarugu area near the Lake Nakuru National Park perimentre fence as he attempted to flee into the park.
A police officer said 12 Mungiki youths and three touts were arrested and were being held at Bondeni Police Station.
The touts vowed not to allow the sect members to continue manning matatu routes in the town. They urged the government to remove all the Mungiki sect members from routes in order to restore the peace.
On Friday, two Mungiki youths were admitted to hospital after theywere injured by touts in the Free Area Estate.
Matatu touts and drivers went on strike and hunted for the sect members whom they accused of extorting money from them and harassing passengers.
The matatu operators said the sect members previously enjoyed protection from the Kanu government. The sect members manning bus terminuses were collecting between Sh20 and Sh50 from every vehicle.
"Outlawed Mungiki Sect Kicked Out From Routes"
by Francis Ngige ("The East African Standard," January 3, 2003)
Police have finally flushed out members of the outlawed Mungiki sect from the matatu termini in Nakuru town.
Normal operations at different termini have returned to normal after police managed to kick out the sect members.
A spot check by the East African Standard showed that Mungiki men who manned the stages were nowhere to be seen as matatu owners took charge.
Normal operations had resumed on Shabab, Free Area, London, Mwariki, Kiti and Maili sita routes.
At the Langalanga matatu terminus where frequent fights between touts and the Mungiki members have left scores injured, management was taken over by matatu owners.
The removal of the sect members comes in the wake of bloody confrontation between them and touts at different matatu stops in the town.
On New year's eve, two people sustained serious injuries when the public and the sect members engaged in a bloody fight in Lanet area.
Police who moved in swiftly to avert more bloodshed, arrested 18 members of the outlawed movement who were armed with crude weapons.
Mungiki followers were fighting over the control of a matatu route but members of the public decided to join in the fight that would have caused deaths and destruction of property.
The two injured people were rushed to Rift Valley Provincial General Hospital while the 18 suspects were whisked away by the police.
Yesterday, matatu owners thanked police for removing the Mungiki men from the terminus saying they were illegally collecting money from them.
Each matatu in all the routes in town pay Sh10 each to the Mungiki for a trip. The sect members took over the management purportedly to instil discipline.
Mungiki Movement (Kenya) Updates 2003
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