NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 14 – Kenya continue receiving thousands of illegal immigrants from the region, with a majority of the 2,173 aliens arrested in 2018 coming from Tanzania and Ethiopia at 21 per cent while Somalia accounted for 13 percent in third position.
The statistics are captured in the 2018 National Annual Crime police report, which shows the illegal immigrants arrested during the time under review included Nigerians at 7 per cent, South Sudanese at 6 per cent and Ugandans, at 4 per cent.
Other nationalities nabbed in the country illegally last year included Britons, Indians, Germans, Italians, South African, Canadian, Egyptian, Guineans, Sudanese, Burundians, Chinese, Congolese, Rwandese and unknown nationalities who accounted for less than 100 people.
“Aliens and undocumented immigrants move into the country for different reasons. These include political instability in their home countries, in search of better opportunities in Kenya, criminal intent and using the country as a transit route to other countries. In light of insecurity caused by terrorism and other transactional crimes it is prudent that all aliens and undocumented immigrants be processed through the legal structures,” reads the report released on Friday.
To reverse the trend, police say they have adopted a multi-agency approach to ensure loopholes at the border and points of entries are sealed.
Some of the illegal immigrants were deported according to the report by Inspector General Hillary Mutyambai led National Police Service while others were arrested and eventually prosecuted.
Police identified the influx of undocumented immigrants as a major cause of insecurity, which prompted the Government to launch a national drive, that required all foreigners to register afresh to ensure their information is digitally recorded.
The mid 2018 exercise saw about 34,000 foreigners registered.
Then, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi said Kenya spends a whooping Sh360 million every year, to deport those found in the country illegally.
“We can do more with Sh360 million. Is it fair? I personally would like to discourage to this idea of spending public resources to deport people,” the CS said on May 23, when he launched the 2 months registration drive.
Of the challenges identified included the porous border points in the country more so the stretch covering Kenya and Somalia, and Kenya and Ethiopia.