Capital FM (Nairobi)

20 June 2014

Kenya: Lobbyists Say Uhuru Must Crack Whip On Security Agencies

Nairobi — A section of civil society groups are calling for the overhaul of security agencies in the country for failing to secure the country against attacks.

Kenyans for Peace with Truth and Justice Programs Advisor Njonjo Mue says the security machinery has failed due to the slow response to incidents, including the Mpeketoni attacks where over 60 people were killed.

"We are reminding these individuals that they do not only serve at the President's pleasure, they serve at the pleasure of the Kenyan public and therefore we are reminding the President who bears the responsibility under the constitution to relieve Mr ole Lenku of his position if he does not resign," he said.

"The government's response should be thorough and intelligence-led, not predicated on ethnic or religious profiling. Ethnic or religious profiling is both discriminatory and counter-productive and must never be condoned or carried out by the State. The government has jumped to conclusions without tabling any evidence to that effect or substantiating its allegations."

Kenya Humans Rights Commission Programs Advisor Lillian Kantai on the other hand says there is need for national dialogue between the government and the Opposition as a way of uniting the country.

CORD leaders have been pushing for talks with President Uhuru Kenyatta to discuss various issues, including insecurity, governance and other challenges facing Kenyans.

"We pledge the readiness of Kenyan civil society to assist both the government and the political Opposition to bridge the divide that currently separates them. We therefore encourage the government to work together, the more inclusive the channels for discussing security and other concerns the more likely we are in finding lasting solutions," she said.

"Security is unlikely to improve unless underlying problems of cohesion of Kenyan society are addressed. The political Opposition has a legitimate place in the constitutional order of the country to raise security and other concerns using a multiplicity of lawful channels, both in and out of State institutions."

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