VIOLATING ORDER

No mercy for those breaching movement ban – cops

Panya routes remain a major challenge in enforcing directive.

In Summary
  • Sly Kenyans have been evading the police roadblock in Koma along Kangundo Road.
  • More than 100 motorcycles have so far been impounded in Matungulu.
Matungulu subcounty police commander Kipkemoi Kirui in his office in Machakos county on Tuesday, May 19, 2020.
Matungulu subcounty police commander Kipkemoi Kirui in his office in Machakos county on Tuesday, May 19, 2020.
Image: CORAZON WAFULA

Police in Matungulu have partnered with local administrators and Nyumba Kumi members to stop movement between Machakos and Nairobi.

Matungulu subcounty police commander Kipkemoi Kirui said the aim  is to prevent residents from sneaking into Machakos and Nairobi using panya routes.

Movement into and out of the Nairobi Metropolitan area has been banned to stop the spread of Covid-19.

Kirui said sly Kenyans have been evading the police roadblock in Koma along Kangundo Road.

 

He said the use of panya routes is a major challenge faced by police involved in enforcing the cessation of movement directive.

“Some people have been giving us a hard time enforcing the order around Gadafu and Koma,” Kirui told the Star in his office on Tuesday.

He said there are many panya routes in the area, hence, the need for the public to be responsible. Kirui warned that police would have no mercy on those defying the directive.

He accused boda boda operators of facilitating the unlawful movement.

Residents, Kirui said, cannot walk long distances along the highway due to the heavy security presence and that is where boda boda operators come in.

“The boda boda operators have taken advantage of the situation to help commuters sneak into and out of the two counties through panya routes. We have so far arrested several boda boda operators and impounded more than 100 motorbikes since the cessation of movement order came in force,” he said.

The police boss said apart from the main roadblock in Koma, officers are patrolling the highway from KBC police station to the Matungulu subcounty police headquarters.

 

“Police have ensured that only permitted persons, those offering essential services, get through the roadblock. They have totally cordoned off the road, hence, making it difficult for the public to commute between the two counties.”

A check by the Star along the highway established that a chief in full uniform and dozens of civilians were involved in the operation.

The team was helping in spotting wananchi suspected of moving in and out of the two counties. Members of the team know the locals.

They also help in identifying boda boda operators ferrying people between the counties.

Kirui praised wananchi for supporting the government in enforcing the cessation of movement order.

He said another well-wisher, a local pastor, had stepped in by providing food to police officers alongside other government officials manning the roadblock.

Edited by A.N