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February 21, 2019

NCIC trains team to avert violence as election nears

NCIC director of programmes Millicent Okech and commissioners Morris Dzoro and Roba Sharamo at Sea View Resort in Malindi on November 25 last year /ALPHONCE GARI
NCIC director of programmes Millicent Okech and commissioners Morris Dzoro and Roba Sharamo at Sea View Resort in Malindi on November 25 last year /ALPHONCE GARI

The National Cohesion and Integration Commission has started training district peace committees in counties ahead of the August 8 polls.

The commission in partnership with Uwiano Kenya officials said this is aimed at understanding the dynamics in the counties.

NCIC commissioner Roba Sharamo said 825 community peace committee members have been trained on the importance of peaceful elections.

“We are finding out how various organisations and government agents are prepared in terms of handling issues that might escalate into chaos. The committees are clustered in groups, which include elders, political leaders, aspirants and incumbent politicians,” he said on Wednesday in Nakuru.

The commission has deployed two cohesion monitors in each county to work closely with security teams and community elders.

Political temperatures are rising as the country nears the polls. 

“There is a lot of contention along the positions of governor and MCA. These two positions have attracted many contestants, hence increased incidences of political re-alignment that require greater coordination from government agencies,” Sharamo said.

The commission is monitoring hate speech.

Sharamo said the NCIC has deployed monitoring agents with equipment that will record videos and audio of individuals who might incite Kenyans.

Uwiano has listed 32 counties with high political heat. They include Nakuru, Baringo, Elgeyo Marakwet, Laikipia, Samburu, Isiolo, Marsabit, Homa Bay, Kisumu and Nairobi.

“We are conducting community leaders’ forums in counties that have reported high contention,” Sharamo said.

In January, the commission said leaders are perpetuating hate speech as they engage each other, which may lead to incitement and spark off violence. “We are working with the judiciary, Director of Criminal Investigations, the IEBC and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to prepare cases before court in time,” Sharamo said.

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