NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 2 – The government now wants CNN to give an explanation over a video clip that shows alleged militia arming themselves in the Rift Valley, ahead of Monday’s polls.
In the clip, it is alleged that the militia is arming with guns made from iron piping and bullets bought from the black market or from policemen tasked with protecting them.
The video also shows three men rolling on the ground with crude weapons, but Internal Security Permanent Secretary Mutea Iringo indicated that they are not aware of such activity and the journalist who did the story should give an explanation.
“We have seen that clip and we would like the person reporting to assist the police in getting to the bottom of the truth because this particular caption appears to have been rehearsed and the aim is to cause fear and despondency among Kenyans and this will not be tolerated,” he said.
While pointing out that the clip seemed to be stage-managed, he emphasised the need for responsible journalism stating that any inciteful statements may destabilise the country.
“This is the irresponsible journalism that we are talking about and we would like this particular reporter to cooperate with the police so that we can get to the bottom if this matter and we would like to give you the results because if she filmed them, she must have seen them,” he stressed.
“Where did she see people rehearsing and at what point do you get into such a situation? People are not fighting but you are seeing them rehearsing. We would like to know where that was,” he stated.
He assured Kenyans that all measures have been taken to ensure that the polls are conducted peacefully.
“We have deployed sufficient security and yesterday the provincial security team was on the ground and addressed meetings. They agreed with the elders that they will vote and conduct their affairs peacefully. So we are sure that everything will go peacefully,” he said.
He stated that all the hotspots have been mapped and sufficient security personnel deployed across the country.
He pointed out that 99,729 security officers from the Kenya Police, Administration Police, Kenya Wildlife Service, National Youth Service and the Kenya Forest Service have been deployed to all the 33,000 polling centres.
He indicated that in Nairobi, there are 8,630 police officers who have been deployed to deal with any election related crimes.
He said that air transport has been mobilised to ensure that surveillance is done across the country.
“In Nairobi, we shall have a special aircraft patrolling particularly at night with a powerful search light so that we may be able to respond quickly to any criminal activities,” he stated.
He pointed out that ballot papers were also secured and escorted to the various polling centres safely.
He stated that cars have been mobilised to support the police and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and that there is sufficient security for the national tallying centre at the Bomas of Kenya.
He further put on notice any criminals and hooligans bent at disrupting peace and harmony during this period and warned them that the full force of the law will be applied without fear or favour.