Nairobi, Kenya Dec 13 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has urged women to support the government’s war on crime by exposing suspicious people within their communities.
He said women are capable of detecting bad elements bent on harming innocent Kenyans.
The President spoke during the annual thanksgiving ceremony to mark five golden years of women economic empowerment through Joyful Women Organisation (JOYWO), spearheaded by Rachael the wife to his Deputy William Ruto, at the Moi sports centre, Kasarani, Nairobi.
“I know you are capable of detecting those in the villages who sleep during the day while planning and engaging in unlawful activities at Night,” President Kenyatta told women.
The Head of State said the real threat posed by terror can be effectively countered by unity and participation of all Kenyans in the fight against crime.
Saying politics and religion should be kept out of security matters, the President said the government is determined to use all means at its disposal to win the war on terrorism.
He pointed out that the government will not allow places of worship to be turned into armouries for illegal weapons and ammunition.
The President said the government will also decisively deal with pastors and imams who misuse the pulpit to incite their followers.
“While the Constitution guarantees the freedom of worship and association, prayer houses should never be used to hide illegal firearms and the government has the right to protect its people,” the President said.
He said government was putting in place measures that will enhance its ability to detect and fight terror and other forms of crime. The President asked all Kenyans to support the efforts.
On health, President Kenyatta said two hospitals in every county will be equipped with modern diagnostic equipment. This, he added, will enable patients get affordable treatment for kidney and heart diseases as well as cancer which are currently too costly and inaccessible.
“This way those suffering from the diseases won’t have to travel to Kenyatta national referral hospital,” he added.
President Kenyatta commended JOYWO for its cosmopolitan nature saying women have joined hands irrespective of their ethnicity.
He added that the JOYWO table banking and other services are aimed at uplifting women and pledged a personal donation of Sh 5 million to the women group that leads in dividends next year.
The organisation was formed to empower women economically and enhance house-hold food security by supporting their livelihood projects.
JOYWO patron Rachel Ruto said her organisation started with 17 women groups and a revolving fund of shs.60, 000 and has grown to a membership of 170,000.
Mrs Ruto said the organisation is currently operating in 39 counties up from nine last year. The dividends have also risen from sh.80m last year to 130 million this year, she added.
First Lady Margaret Kenyatta said JOYWO is an example of how society can channel its collective strengths towards to the realisation of development at the grassroots.
“No society can move forward unless women know where they are coming from, where they are and where they want to go,” the First Lady said.
She said table banking enhances growth of women’s small-scale investments and is one of JOYWO’s strategic interventions.