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Religious leaders to partner with police in combating crime

Security agents carrying out operation Maliza Uhalifu, in parts of Northern Kenya will incorporate the clergy and local elders in forging a peaceful front.

Rift Valley Regional Commissioner Dr. Abdi Hassan, while giving bandits an ultimatum to either surrender to the authority or face the full force of the law, said the leaders will be engaged in activities that will help enhance peace in the region.

Speaking in his Nakuru Offices, Hassan said that they would soon be moving into phase two of the operation when the repercussions will be unbearable.

Hassan said that the bandits have an opportunity to surrender their weapons while the offer still stands, noting that the intelligence led operation would smoke out criminals and have them dealt with, according to the law.

“We need to free the region from hardened marauding criminals who operate with impunity and deep rooted attitude that they are indomitable and they would like to dare everyone including the government, but their days have come to an end. Anybody who dares security agencies with such impunity and audacity will be met with lethal force that will regret for a long time to come,” warned Hassan.

Accompanied by other members of the Regional Security and Intelligence Committee, Hassan said that they were still appealing to those with illegal firearms to surrender them to authorities.

Confirming an attempted attack carried out by bandits against the Kenya Defense Forces on Wednesday, Hassan said that two bandits were arrested and an assortment of weapons confiscated.

“I ask the people in the gazetted areas to collaborate and support the government agencies in terms of maintenance of law and order to restore normalcy so that socio-economic programmes can progress,” he said, noting that only bandits were targeted and law-abiding residents will not be harassed.

In the police-led operation that commenced on 15th of February in Samburu, Turkana, Elgeyo Marakwet, West Pokot, Marsabit and Baringo counties, which were affected by banditry attacks, the military also joined in to offer support.

“The police are the lead agents, they are leading the operation, the military is only here to support and buttress what is going on,” explained Hassan.

This comes barely a week after four police officers were killed in Kainuk, Turkana during an attack by bandits. At the moment, 23 firearms have been surrendered to the police.

By Anne Sabuni and Okello Tracy



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