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Enumerator goes missing in Kisii, police tracing data capture kit

The enumerator is said to have left the gadgets – a tablet and a power bank – in the house from where they went missing/FILE

KISII, Kenya, Aug 25 – Police in Marani, Kisii County, have launched a search for a census enumerator who went missing Saturday after he reportedly lost data capture kits being used in the national exercise which enters the second day Sunday evening.

The enumerator is said to have left the gadgets – a tablet and a power bank – in the house from where they went missing.

Authorities in the area are seeking to recover the kit which is crucial in the ongoing national census.

Kisii police boss Martin Kibet said the enumerator’s phone signal was last traced in Mai Mahiu.

A similar incident was reported on Friday in Nyamira where police officers recovered a missing data capture kit and a powered bank at a local bar where an enumerator had given it as collateral after failing to pay his bill.

Gilbert Maranga, an ICT Supervisor in Kemera area is said to have gone missing since Thursday prompting the Nyamira County Census Coordinator, Lensa Apondi, to report his absence to police.

The police launched a search after receiving the report which led to the recovery of the gadgets at a joint identified as Club Focus.

“A search was mounted and we were able to locate him at a drinking joint at Princess Pub where he was arrested and led the police to another bar namely Club Focus were the gadgets were recovered from the Club Manager,” a senior police officer said.

Responding to concerns arising form the Friday incident, ICT Principal Secretary Jerome Ochieng told a pre-census media briefing on Saturday enumerators caught up in breach of the contract they signed will be delisted and face the full force of the law.

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He said contingency plans were in place to ensure the census continue uninterrupted.

“You know we live in a unique society and as we go for this census, we are also aware of emergencies, so we have prepared ourselves to deal with them. We have other enumerators on standby for cases such as what happened in Nyamira,” Ochieng said.

He has warned the enumerators against misconduct of any kind that may negatively affect the exercise.

“We will deal with each case administratively and those caught in any misconduct will not be part of this exercise,” Ochieng warned.

Additional reporting by Njoki Kihiu

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