FROM NORTHERN KENYA

Police to crackdown on buses used to transport drugs to Central

In Summary

The Central region commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga said the drugs are packaged as parcels and transported through buses that offer courier services.

They are delivered to criminals offices and distributed to peddlers.

Bhang is also packaged as cigarettes to confuse security agents.

Central regional commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga during a security meeting in Kangari, Murang'a county, on Saturday
WAR ON DRUGS: Central regional commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga during a security meeting in Kangari, Murang'a county, on Saturday
Image: /Alice Waithera
Central regional commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga during a security meeting at Kangari in Kigumo, Murang'a county, on Saturday
WAR ON DRUGS: Central regional commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga during a security meeting at Kangari in Kigumo, Murang'a county, on Saturday
Image: /Alice Waithera
Central regional commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga in Kangari, Kigumo, where illicit liqour, bhang and gambling machines were destroyed on Saturday
WAR ON DRUGS: Central regional commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga in Kangari, Kigumo, where illicit liqour, bhang and gambling machines were destroyed on Saturday
Image: /Alice Waithera

Security agents will start cracking down on buses that transport drugs from Northern Kenya to Central region.

Central regional commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga has said most of the drugs, especially bhang, consumed in the region are transported from neighbouring countries.

Nyagwanga said the drugs are packaged like parcels and transport them using buses that offer courier services.

The parcels are then delivered to peddlers' who distribute to their clients.

The commissioner said police officers will be dispatched to man roadblocks along roads leading from Northern Kenya to intercept the drugs before they reach their destinations.

“These criminals continue to change tact in the way they do their business and that is what we want Kenyans to know,” he said.

Drug peddlers are now packaging bhang as cigarettes so as not to attract attention, Nyagwanga said on Saturday.

He said, however, his security team is committed on stopping drug trafficking in the region. The administrator appealed for the cooperation of residents.

“Just tell us where you think things are not going the right way, and we will come,” Nyagwanga said.

He said a sustained fight against drugs and illicit liquor has borne fruit and that youths in the region have started being productive.

Last year, there was an outcry by Murang’a leaders over the increased cases of bhang smoking that followed the countrywide crackdown on second-generation brew in 2015.

This resulted in increased crime ranging from sexual offences to murder.

Nyagwanga also sounded a warning to police officers who collude with drug suppliers and peddlers.

He urged residents to report them to their commanders for investigations and disciplinary measures to be taken.

He spoke at Kangari shopping centre in Murang’a during a security meeting with local administrators and matatu operators.

Nyagwanga also opened up the Kangari-Kigumo-Murang’a for more matatu saccos to operate. Only one matatu sacco was operating until recently.  Three more saccos have been cleared to be plying the route.

Criminal gangs that patronise the route from Kaharati made it difficult for other saccos to operate on the road.

But Nyagwanga said the road belongs to the government and any licensed public service vehicle can use the route.

“From now, police officers will work with sacco officials to ensure they work freely and comfortably,” he said, urging the saccos to provide their stage managers with uniforms for easy identification.

Nyagwanga also put on notice criminal gangs that extort money from matatu operators in the county, saying they will be dealt with.

Regional police commander Patrick Lumumba said the gangs have operated on the roads for long enough and their time is up.

The move to open up the road was welcomed by residents who said it will bring a healthy competition among the operators.

Nyagwanga also oversaw the destruction of over 4,000 litres of illicit brew, 10 kilos of bhang and 45 gambling machines confiscated in Murang’a.

He said drones that were dispatched to Chania River in Gatanga in May last year have helped to eliminate production of brews in the area.

“The drones helped police officers to survey up to three kilometers of the river from a distance,” he said, adding that the same technology will deployed to Kilimabogo area which is also facing the same challenge.