NAIROBI, Kenya, May 21 – President Mwai Kibaki has directed security officers at the Kenya Ethiopia border to remain vigilant in order to ensure peace and security is maintained in the volatile area.
Speaking at the military recruit\’s training school in Eldoret, during a passing out parade President Kibaki also urged local leaders in the region to engage in peace initiatives involving elders between the two communities, in order to resolve conflicts that are linked mainly to resource sharing.
"Early this month, we lost several lives during a cross-border conflict on the Kenya-Ethiopia border. I urge security officers to remain vigilant in order to ensure peace and security are maintained in the area," he said.
He also said that the situation in Somalia continued to pose challenges to Kenya\’s national security.
The Head of State said the challenges have been worsened by the proliferation of small arms as well as the recruitment of Kenyan youth into radical insurgent groups.
He said security has been stepped up to forestall any acts of aggression and to ensure fighting does not spill over into Kenya.
The President earlier this month held discussions with the Prime Minister of Ethiopia in Kampala, Uganda and agreed to plan for a joint ministerial meeting to brainstorm on ways in which the damage at the Kenya-Ethiopia border can be alleviated.
He said he believed the meeting will also be a perfect platform of resolving other outstanding issues that lead to the fatal violence at the same time cultivate an harmonious way of living together.
"I am confident that the Joint Ministerial meeting will resolve outstanding border issues and facilitate the harmonious co-existence of the various communities living along common borders," he said.
He also called on local leaders in the region to engage in peace initiatives involving elders between communities living along the border so as to resolve conflicts that are linked mainly to resource sharing.
"We are aware that since the 1990s, revenge attacks between the two communities along our common border with Ethiopia have been cyclical," President Kibaki said.
He disclosed that adequate officers have also been deployed to secure the border with Somalia and ensure fighting does not spill over into Kenya.
The President appealed to the members of the public to complement the efforts of the Government by volunteering information that will lead to the pre-emption of crime and the apprehension of criminals.
In regard to the bomb explosion that caused the death of five children in Kajiado District, he asked the military and other security forces to ensure that training fields are left secure after training.
"I have, therefore, instructed that steps be taken to ensure unexploded bombs are removed from the training fields after firing exercises," President Kibaki said.
The president urged the newly qualified Armed Forces recruits to uphold the same strength of character and determination they demonstrated in the course of their training.
"You are also expected, to maintain high levels of professionalism and discipline. Above all, you are expected to maintain the highest standards of loyalty to the Government and people of Kenya," he said.
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