Capital FM (Nairobi)

27 November 2012

Kenya: Violence Prone Areas Mapped, Action Underway

The Internal Security Ministry has identified potential hotspots for violence in every county across the country and put in place measures to prevent conflict in the build-up to the General Election next year.

An initiative involving both Provincial Commissioners and County Forum Committees has also been launched to mediate between warring communities and encourage peaceful co-existence.

Speaking during the launch, Provincial Administration and Internal Security Permanent Secretary Mutea Iringo said that the initiative will seek to root out rogue chiefs who foster criminal activities instead of doing their job.

"We have identified the hotspots in every county and these are being dealt with appropriately. Of course there has been tension here and there because of various reasons. Most of these have been dealt with. You only come to notice a few that emerge and appear to be going out of hand but we are equal to the task," he said.

"We have examples like North Eastern, and we also have issues in parts of Upper Eastern like Isiolo, Moyale and these have been dealt with. Of course the conflict that occurred in Tana Delta has also been dealt with and currently, we are dealing with the situation in Samburu," he stated.

Citing Samburu and Garissa as examples, he emphasised that any chief encouraging lawlessness will be dealt with sternly.

"In Samburu there are a few chiefs who were actually among the communities when they were planning (violence) and we have relieved a few off their duties because definitely we cannot allow a chief to side with a community when they are planning to conduct illegal activities," he pointed out.

"Similarly in Garissa, there are a few who have not been cooperating with the government and action will be taken but we cannot sack all chiefs. Many chiefs are very good and they are doing a wonderful job except for a few."

"When you fail to do what you must do, the necessary procedures are taken. You are interdicted, the matter is taken to a disciplinary committee and action is taken. This is what we have done. Definitely if any chief is not cooperating, you have to leave the job," he said.

A councillor and four chiefs were last week arraigned in a Maralal court in connection with the killing of more than 40 police officers at Baragoi in Samburu district.

The five denied the charges of robbery with violence and were remanded until November 26.

Lachola ward councillor Lawrence Lorunyei, chiefs Jeremiah Ekurao, Amojong Lothuru, Christopher Epul, Ewoi Losike appeared before principal magistrate Charles Ndegwa.

The accused faced 12 charges of robbery with violence and stealing 12 G3 rifles.

Thirty-three chiefs and their assistants in Garissa town and its environs were also sacked for allegedly failing to help stop terror attacks in the area.

The chiefs were relieved of their duties for alleged laxity in the fight against Al Shabaab militants, claiming they had taken for granted recent attacks on State security officers in the town.

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