NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 22 – Interior Principal Secretary Monica Juma says she is comfortable with her current post at Harambee House despite rejection by the National Assembly of her nomination as Secretary to the Cabinet.
The Interior PS told Capital FM News on Monday that she has continued undertaking her duties well and she will not let the situation dampen her spirits.
“I have always been comfortable in the Interior Ministry. Nothing has changed. Dr Monica Juma is the Principal Secretary of the Department of Interior,” she stated.
Members of Parliament voted to support a report by the committee that vetted Dr Juma, and recommended that she was unsuitable as Secretary to the Cabinet.
Dr Juma was speaking ahead of the regional conference on countering violent extremism where she stressed the need for a concerted effort by all Kenyans to counter radicalization.
“Some people are very angry. They know some of the youth that have been doing some of these things. So we are asking and calling upon everybody to help these youths to identify themselves and we are looking at places where we can put them and debrief them and see those that are willing to be rehabilitated and so we can do that as part of ridding ourselves of our own kids becoming the killers of this country,” she said at the Capital FM studios.
She further emphasised the need to separate reality from propaganda in the war against terrorism in the country.
Speaking during the Capital in the Morning show, the PS further indicated that the government is more focused on establishing the root cause of radicalisation while at the same time exploring solutions.
“When we look at the profile of the terrorist or their agents, it tells a different story. It tells a story of a whole cocktail of youths of different ethnicities. For example, a number of kids that we have seen going to be radicalized in Syria are not uneducated or marginalized. So we need to change our thinking and the way we view radicalisation,” she said.
Hundreds of youths have surrendered since the government issued amnesty for those giving themselves up and are already being integrated back to the society.
“We have received quite a number of youths from across the country and only this weekend, a team from the Ministry met with some of them because we are being told that some are a bit nervous. The reason is that they are afraid that they will be punished but we are building confidence in them,” the Interior PS stated.
She encouraged any youth that may have found themselves in this situation to come forward as they were part of the nation and they would be rehabilitated.
“If you look at the entire lot, it is a completely different story from the propaganda that is driving it. It is true, if you look at what they claim in their website, how they frame their recruitment patterns, you will see issues of unemployment and you will see issues about the categorization of certain groups,” she stated.
Kenya will be hosting a major conference on radicalisation later this week to find solutions of countering extremism in the country.
Dr Juma says that part of the meeting will be set aside to look at the root cause of radicalisation and what can be done to help those who were keen to quit the vice.
“We must separate that propaganda from the reality on the ground. What we see when you analyze the pattern when you analyze the people, when you analyze the economic status of these people cuts across society and that is why it so important for everybody to be on board,” she stated. “Radicalisaiton is taking place in homes and not just poor homes but middle class, upper class, it is being done in the cyber space. Not every poor child can have access to computers back at home and so we must separate propaganda from reality.”