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Do not dare steal census gadgets, police warn Kenyans

Kenyans who are targeting to steal the enumeration gadgets have been warned that the police will soon catch up with them since the gadgets contain an in built traceable Global Positioning System (GPS).

The National Police Service (NPS) Spokesperson, Charles Owino said those who have stolen the gadgets or were illegally having them will face the full force of law for interfering with a national exercise.

Owino who spoke on Wednesday at the Government Media Centre during a census update said so far, they had received reports that a total of 15 census tablets and three power banks had been lost.

“If you are holding the enumeration tablets you should know that they are useless to you since the way they are programed one cannot use them. It is meaningless to risk your lives attempting to steal a tablet and yet it will not have any use and the moment you try to use it we will track you down and arrest you,” said Owino.

The police spokesperson called on Kenyans to support the census exercise asking anyone who has found any of the lost tablets to surrender them to the police.

He added that there were administrators who had been arrested for inflating figures and other malpractices including a Chief and an Assistant Chief from Wajir County.

A  public servant from Kajiado County had also appeared before court while an enumerator was arrested in Baringo County.

“We have incidents all over the country from the loss of tablets to assaults, dog bites and two unfortunate cases of rape and we have put in place measures to ensure that this does not happen again,” said Owino.

“The Inspector General (IG) assures all enumerators of their security and police commanders from the lowest level of the police post to the regional commanders have been instructed clearly that they will take personal responsibility where enumerators, supervisors and even members of the public are attacked when the census is going on,” said Owino.

He added that in one county they had arrested 13 administrators which is very unfortunate “but it is for the purpose of ensuring credibility of this exercise which is very important for the country.”

The Government Spokesperson, Col. (Rtd) Cyrus Oguna said that this being a government sponsored exercise there can only be one source of information and that is the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) and therefore people should ignore any noise coming from the social media and other sources.

“We are using digital gadgets for the first time in the census exercise and therefore it is very easy for us to audit and verify the data. Those with allegations that they are more than was recorded in the previous census should stop politicizing this process,” said Oguna.

By  Joseph  Ng’ang’a

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