The Nyanza Regional Commissioner (RC), James Kianda has put on notice criminals holding illicit guns in Kuria region of Migori County to surrender them within two weeks or face the full force of the law.
The ultimatum period commenced with effect from March Monday 12th and will end on March 25th, 2019 failure to which the state will deploy its forces to recover the weapons.
Kianda said the government issued a similar notice last year but the culprits chose to ignore it at their own peril.
“Those who will surrender such weapons on their own volition will be pardoned for their sins but none responders will be punished severely,” he stressed.
Less than 15 illegal guns were either surrendered voluntarily to the local security agencies or found dropped at strategic sports by unknown criminals last year.
“This time round we will not backtrack on our resolve to mop up such weapons in the hands of criminal in this region. And you all know what happens when we go that route,” he told a security meeting at Isebania border town Tuesday.
He told the forum attended by security agencies in the region, elected leaders, representatives of the business community, youth groups and Kuria clan elders that it will not be business as usual this time round to criminals harassing innocent residents with the illegally acquired arms.
The RC called on leaders from the region to press upon the perpetrators to hand over the weapons to the government for safe keeping.
“As leaders you have a responsibility to see that these weapons are returned to the government without waiting for government forces to be deployed here to recover them by force,” stressed Mr. Kianda
At the same time, the administrator urged the residents to assist police in fighting crimes of all kinds by providing useful information regarding trafficking of bhang, smuggling of small arms and light weapons across the Kenya/Tanzania international borders and reporting the general movements of gangsters within and outside the county.
The illicit trade across the common border with Tanzania was denying Kenya a huge amount of revenue and the vice must be stopped at all cost, Kianda added.
The official said the state was keen to eliminate stock theft in the region and asked the leaders to strengthen their ‘Nyumba Kumi’ units in order to help them identify suspicious people out to rob their people of livestock and other valuables.
On cross border relations, the Regional Commissioner underscored the need for the nationals of the two neighbouring countries to coexist peacefully and relate well on maters trade and cultural exchanges.
“Likewise, communities residing within Migori must strive to live harmoniously for the sake of peace and development in the area,” he added
The administrator warned those thriving on using hate speech to incite communities against each other to stop their evil games before the long arm of the government reaches them.
The forum was also attended by senior security officials from Kisumu, Migori County Commissioner, Joseph Rotich and County Police Commander, Joseph Nthenge among other leaders.
By George Agimba