Three criminals have been shot dead and 306 others arrested in Mombasa County alone in the last two weeks in a renewed war on crime in the port city.
Addressing the public during the International Day of Peace in Kisauni, the Mombasa County Commissioner (CC), Gilbert Kitiyo said in a month’s time, Mombasa would change for the better where tourism would flourish as well as businesses like it was before.
The CC said the government is out to flash out all criminal elements, including the juvenile gangs which would guarantee the Mombasa city regains its former glory when it was synonymous with safe holiday destination.
He said the recent waves of insecurity have robbed the city of employment opportunities since investors feared for security as tourists were scared by reported incidences of crime.
The CC noted that a juvenile gang was on Friday arrested in Likoni where school going children were found to be carrying machetes and knives which they use to rob civilians at times causing them injuries, including death casualties.
He said a majority of the criminal gangs terrorizing residents were juvenile gangs noting that a group of teens between 18 and 14 years were also arrested yesterday carrying weapons in Kisauni.
Kitiyo challenged teachers in schools to be on the lookout for suspicious children in school who have money for luxurious lifestyles and report them to the police for further investigations.
He called on the public to protect themselves by which ever means from these gangs and report to police when they encountered these marauding criminals.
“I am not saying you take law into your hands. I said if you encounter a criminal or they invade your homes, protect yourselves then call the police to come and carry on with the remaining part,” said the CC.
Kitiyo noted with concern the increased number of organizations with lots of money rewarding criminals in the name of wanting them to reform by buying them motorcycles or taking them to rehabilitation centres every now and then.
The CC said these drug addicts who walked in and out of rehab centers was a sign that they could not reform and they should be left alone for nature to take its cause.
He warned parents not to give children money but instead pack them break time snacks since they were being targeted by drug peddlers with drugged sweets on sale in the streets where they eventually ended up getting addicted.
Speaking at the public gathering, the Mombasa Member of National Assembly, Aisha Mohammed called on parents to closely monitor their children’s movements and the friendships they maintained to avoid falling prey to bad influence.
She urged parents to instill religious values in their children since all religions taught and preached peace hence they would develop good morals and maintain a positive character.
By Joseph Kamolo