According to Johannes Hausholo, tasked with roasting the dog, a strong wind blew over the fire as they were busy barbecuing the animal and the next thing they saw was a clump of grass burning and before they could do anything the blaze had spread all over. No extensive damage was however caused to property, neither was there any loss of life. This was due to quick intervention by community members with the assistance of firefighters from Omuthiya Town Council who extinguished the blaze.
“The dog has been terrorising the village so it was decided it should be killed and braaied,” said Hausholo.
Dog meat is regarded as a very rare juicy delicacy in the northern part of the country, where it’s infrequent to spot a dead dog carcass lying around.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Land Reform has advised community members to be vigilant and cautious when handling fires.
“No week passes by that we don’t get reports of fire outbreaks, thus lately we have been busy with awareness campaigns to sensitise communities on how to handle and prevent veld fires. This is the season for veld fires, and we foresee this year as challenging due to the abundance of grass,” said regional forester at Onankali, Monika Amutenya. Amutenya added that the directorate has in the meantime introduced an intervention of making firebreaks/cutlines in the commonage areas to mitigate the situation.
“We have done 125-kilometre cutlines in Omuntele and Olukonda constituencies where we find open grazing land. Next we will move to Okankolo, as there is also commonage land. We can however not do firebreaks in communities as that’s the responsibility of each household,” she said.
The forester however encouraged the community to report fire incidents timeously so that the ministry can intervene to contain bush fires before they cause extensive damage.
Meanwhile, the acting CEO of Omuthiya Simon Nghuulondo said the council is obliged to assist with fire outbreaks within town and nearby villages. “We attend to fire outbreaks not only in town but also at nearby areas beyond the townland. We however charge a levy for the service rendered to homesteads, but in this case it happened in no man’s land so no one is to be charged as it belongs to none,” said Nghuulondo.
“We thus request our line ministry to provide us with a small truck fitted with four-wheel-drive that can go into inaccessible areas,” he added.