A section of elders and peace committee officials from Garissa County has urged the national government to fully implement recommendations reached during the weekend’s consultative forum for peace and security aimed at countering violent extremism.
Speaking to KNA on phone separately the elders led by Kenya Livestock Marketing Council Chairman, Dubat Amey and county peace committee secretary Hassan Osman said that if the key recommendations are not fully implemented, the war on terror may not succeed.
Ove the weekend, the Garissa Governor, Ali Korane convened a leaders’ meeting to discuss and make recommendation to the national government on how best to combat the runaway insecurity in the region occasioned by the recent Al-Shabaab attacks that claimed the lives of four pupils in Saretho and 3 non-local teachers in Kamuthe.
The two said that most of the recommendations are similar to the ones that were presented to President Uhuru Kenyatta after the Garissa University attack in April 2, 2015 that among others recommended the posting of Mohamed Saleh as the regional commissioner.
Among the recommendations reached was that local administrators among them chiefs should be armed and KDF deployed to man the border with Somalia instead of police officers without specialized training who are currently deployed to the border area.
They also called for an end to the extra judicial killings and forced disappearances of locals and called on security agencies to treat volunteers of information with utmost secrecy to avoid victimization.
The other recommendations include motivation of the community to willingly share intelligence information and rewarding genuine informers.
They further recommended that the county collaborates with the national government in funding activities towards beefing up security.
“It is one thing to have a good document and totally different to implement it. Our biggest weakness and undoing is failure to implement the recommendation,” Amey said.
Amey who is also a community elder said that a quarter of the 2015 recommendations were implemented and the region had slowly started witnessing relative calm.
“We know for a fact when the government seriously implements the recommendations, the insecurity we are witnessing today will be a thing of the past,” he added.
Amey said the recommendations should be cascaded to the grassroots because most of them touch on the role of the local community.
Osman on his part said that the peace committees across the seven sub counties should be funded and mandated in civic education.
“We want to work closely with the sub county security committees because they are the ones who will implement some of the recommendations,” Osman said.
“Going forward we want to build trust between the locals and the security agencies so that they can be able to share crucial information on suspicious characters while the security agencies should be able to keep the same information in confidence,” he noted.
Senator Yusuf Haji, National Assembly Majority Leader, Aden Duale (Garissa Township MP), Sofia Abdinoor (Ijara), Mohamed Dahiye (Dadaab), Mohamed Hire (Lagdera), Omar Shurie (Balambala), Abdikarim Osman (Fafi) were in attendance.
By Jacob Songok