GUNS NOT BATONS

State to arm Northeastern chiefs to fight banditry - Kindiki

Says move to be preceded by vetting to ascertain their suitability to bear arms

In Summary
  • He lauded security officers for their selfless sacrifices in protecting the lives and property of their fellow citizens.
  • Kindiki said the administrators will also be assigned with police officers to capacitate them to fight crime
Interior CS Kithure Kindiki in Wajir on Thursday
Interior CS Kithure Kindiki in Wajir on Thursday
Image: HANDOUT

Chiefs and assistant chiefs serving in banditry-prone areas will be issued with firearms to actively support security officers in fighting the menace.

This is according to Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki.

Kindiki announced that the move will be preceded by a thorough vetting of the administrators to ascertain their suitability to bear arms and accountability of use.

“You cannot expect an officer to pursue criminals and recover stolen livestock using a baton," Kindiki said.

"I have directed the security teams in the counties affected by cattle rustling to vet our chiefs and assistant chiefs so that we can arm them to protect the lives and property of wananchi."

Speaking in Arbajahan Primary School, Wajir county, Kindiki said the administrators will also be assigned with police officers to capacitate them to fight crime and enforce law and order effectively.

Wajir chief during a meeting with Interior CS Kithure Kindiki on November 24
Wajir chief during a meeting with Interior CS Kithure Kindiki on November 24
Image: HANDOUT

The CS also directed that an additional 200 National Police Reservists (NPRs) be recruited in the area as part of efforts to beef up the security.

“We won’t have investment and socio-economic growth in Northern Kenya without lasting peace, security and stability. We can only open up this region to investment through improved policing," he said.

He lauded security officers for their selfless sacrifices in protecting the lives and property of their fellow citizens and added that the government was keen on progressive deployment of more officers to reinforce security.

Kindiki instructed the county commissioners of Wajir and Isiolo to initiate the formalisation of peace meetings and institutionalise the consultative framework of elders as a forum for dispute resolution.

“I strongly believe we can end the retrogressive practice of cattle rustling and clashes here if the elders are fully involved. You will constitute a 20-member team of elders from the two counties to steer peace talks and peaceful coexistence," he said.

Two more ASTU camps recently constructed in the area will also be opened and staffed with officers to beef up security.

The CS also noted that the government is also planning to operationalise the administrative units in the area.

The CS was accompanied by Deputy Police IG Noor Gabow, Wajir Governor Ahmed Abdullahi and local elected leaders.

Interior CS Kithure Kindiki with leaders from Wajiri county on November 24
Interior CS Kithure Kindiki with leaders from Wajiri county on November 24
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