- Kindiki dismissed claims by some political leaders that there is favouritism in the ongoing operation.
- The CS said the ongoing operation to root out bandits and armed criminals from the region has nothing to do with politics.
Interior and National Administration CS Kithure Kindiki has insisted that he will not let politicians meddle in the ongoing security operations in bandit-hit regions.
Speaking at Ngaratuko Primary School grounds, in Baringo North subcounty on Tuesday, Kindiki said security agencies must be allowed time and space to do their jobs.
The CS said the ongoing operation to root out bandits and armed criminals from the region has nothing to do with politics. He said that it also has nothing to do with culture.
"There is no culture that allows people to steal other people's livestock, kill innocent and impoverish them economically. That is thuggery and no different from terrorism. Politicians must keep off security operations. We will not allow them to meddle with security matters. Law enforcement agencies must be allowed to do their work," Kindiki said.
He warned politicians who have always used banditry and livestock rustling to advance their political ambitions that times have changed, and their days are numbered.
The Interior CS added that the officers deployed for the ongoing Maliza Uhalifu Joint National Police Service and Kenya Defence Forces operation will not leave until banditry and livestock theft in the region ends.
He also dismissed claims by some political leaders that there is favouritism in the ongoing operation.
"And make no mistake. The officers we have deployed will be on the ground forever. This is not a one-off deployment."
Kindiki urged residents of areas affected by banditry to work with security agencies if they want the criminals defeated.
He said they should support security officers by providing information on the bandits.
"The government is on your side. We must team up to defeat these crooks. Don't be incited against our security officers. Share information with our security officers. That is the surest way to defeat these criminals and their political and commercial benefactors and beneficiaries," Kindiki said.
During the visit to Namba and Kamenjo areas that were recently attacked, the CS said they now embarked on a plan to seal off operational gaps.
Kindiki said this has started with reorganising the management, command and control of the National Police Reservists to supplement the capabilities of the National Police Service and Kenya Defence Forces in the operation.
He insisted that while significant strides have been made in the operation, much more needs to be done to completely neutralise the threats posed by bandits in Northern Rift Valley.
"The new operational and structural design of NPRs that kick off this month is to ensure that the weapons they are allocated are not misused and that the NPRs are accountable," Kindiki said.
"Their main work will be to help Kenya Police Service Officers and KDF soldiers seal off escape routes used by bandits coz they have a better understanding of the terrain, being residents."