Coast police boss transferred as war on drugs continues

In Summary

• Ocholla will be replaced by Rashid Yakub

Interior CS Fred Matiang'i.
Interior CS Fred Matiang'i.
Image: FILE

Coast regional police commander Marcus Ocholla has been moved to Rift Valley region.

The reshuffle comes on the backdrop of ongoing war on drug trafficking cartels which has tentacles in the Judiciary, national police service and in politics as revealed during the Akasha's trial in US.

In the mini reshuffle by IG Hillary Mutyambai, Ocholla will be replaced by Rashid Yakub from Western region while Edwin Mwamburi from Rift Valley replaces Yakub.

Ocholla had barely served for seven months after reporting at Kizingo-based police headquarters in January this year during the restructuring in the national police service.

On Saturday, the Star reported transfers of two senior cops, Mombasa county police commander Johnstone Ipara and County commissioner Evans Achoki.

Ipara has been moved to Uasin Gishu with reports saying he will head a unit of officers guarding home of a senior government official, a demotion from a county commander position.

"He was supposed to hand over on Saturday," said a police source privy with the intrigues who spoke in confidence.

Its not clear where Achoki, who will be inspecting Mombasa ASK Show grounds on Tuesday, is heading.

The transfers come days after Interior CS Fred Matiang'i announced a ruthless operation to break Coast drug cartels which have been linked to Kisauni deadly machete-wielding youth gangs.

"We have lived with this thing (drug trafficking) for a very long time and we are going to the farthest extent, even if it is reorganising the government's security force structures to address this problem," Matiang'i said flanked by Mutyambai and Mombasa security top brass.

The reshuffles follow controversial raid at drugs suspect Ali Punjani's palatial home last week.

Ipara, who led the raid, criticised the media after a local newspaper claimed Punjani had been assigned armed police bodyguards.

He also dismissed reports that Punjani's, cars had bulletproof windows.

Ipara is said to have been transferred after some transactions from financial documents confiscated from Punjani's study room for analysis were traced back to him.

Three prison officers at Manyani Maximum Prison were interdicted and an OCS in Lamu in under investigations in war on drugs in Coast.

The renewed war on drugs lifts lid on violent bribery in the illicit trade that is Mombasa's catastrophe.