Govt to Arm North-Eastern Chiefs, CS Kindiki says » Capital News

Nairobi, Kenya, Nov 24 – Chiefs and Assistant chiefs serving in areas affected by banditry will be issued with firearms to actively support security officers in combating the menace.

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

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

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

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 and provide a sustainable environment for development.

“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 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.

The Interior CS further instructed the County Commissioners of Wajir and Isiolo to initiate the formalization of peace meetings and institutionalize 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 a20-member team of elders from the two counties to steer peace talks and peaceful coexistence,” he said.

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

Kindiki also noted that the government is also planning to operationalize the administrative units in the area.

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

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