NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 19 – The government is reassuring Kenyans that it has security under control, despite worries from the public that crime is spiralling out of control.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph ole Lenku who was hard pressed on Wednesday to explain what measures were being taken to tackle crime, said the interception of terrorists in Mombasa this week was clear indication that security forces were fully in control.
“There is no doubt that the capture of these assorted arms and the arrest of suspects averted an inconceivable disaster that could have resulted in loss of lives and destruction of property.”
Police intercepted two suspects in a car and found it laden with Improvised Explosive Devices, grenades, detonators and a mobile phone improvised for detonating bombs, 270 rounds of ammunition and an A-K47 rifle. READ Mombasa police foil terror attack
He allayed fears of attacks in the country saying; “security has been beefed up in Mombasa County and other parts of the country. With Mombasa being a tourist hub, we are keen to ensure that tourists’ holidays are not disrupted by insecurity.”
He spoke barely hours after the deputy’s president’s spokesman David Mugonyi was hijacked not far from State House, and days after several shootings right in the centre of Nairobi, the last being on Friday when a trader was gunned down near Jamia Mosque.
The spate of insecurity has been felt across the country, but Lenku says a lot has been achieved since the launch of the Rapid Results Initiative by his ministry, indicating that 129 suspected terrorist have been arrested and some arraigned in court.
“Despite these achievements, it is disheartening to note that security agencies continue being subjected to unfair criticism for taking action on armed youths who had taken refuge in Masjid Musa Mosque,” he lamented.
Other achievements, he said was the arrest of 356 illegal aliens in Bungoma, Mombasa, Garissa and the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. He revealed four airlines had been surcharged for bringing inadmissible persons into the country.
Also within the period, 47 people being trafficked through JKIA were intercepted and deported to their respective countries.
Asked about rising crime within Nairobi County, Lenku said the situation was normal.
“As Kenyans we need to appreciate the efforts our security agencies are putting to deal with this crime. Some things border on our patriotism,” he said.
“We must understand as Kenyans that it is our concerted efforts as a country that will help us achieve the desired results. Our continued blame on our security agencies to me is unpatriotic and unfair.”
“Sometime back, our police have been on the receiving end but this has changed. We should all stand together and support our security agencies.”
He said talks were underway with the Ethiopian government on how to man the porous border in the north.
He revealed that he will next week appoint members of the Refugee Affairs Committee that will handle technical and logistical details of the repatriation process in efforts to reduce the swelling numbers of refugees in the country.