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Security beefed up in Tana River ahead of Easter festivities

The government has beefed up security in Tana River County, ahead of the Easter festivities, County Commissioner (CC), Oningoi  Ole  Sosio has said.

Sosio said security patrols had been intensified in areas prone to terrorist attacks, such as the county’s common border with Lamu.

Speaking to journalists in his office, in Hola Town on Thursday, Sosio said security officers would secure churches and other areas, where Christians would gather to celebrate the Easter holidays.

“Worshippers wishing to hold night vigils will be free to do so, provided they notify the police, so security can be provided for them,” he said.

The administrator said the government was clearing bushes along the Minjila-Witu section of the Malindi-Lamu road, to improve visibility and forestall any attacks.

“We are now clearing bushes up to 50 meters, on each side of the road, so that motorists can notice any suspicious movements early enough to prevent any attacks,” the County boss said.

Sosio said a specialized unit of the Kenya Defence Forces had also been stationed at Nyongoro area, where most attacks by the Al Shabaab militia have occurred in the recent past.

He dismissed claims of extra-judicial killings by officers from the KDF, but did not rule out incidents of people being killed by the militia in forests or some youth disappearing to join the terrorists.

A human rights group had claimed that some people had disappeared in the forests and claimed they could have been killed by security forces.

He said the ban on night movement of dugout canoes was still in force to prevent any terrorists and criminals from other counties from using the vessels to carry out atrocities, within Tana River.

“We are also happy that the river is swollen and no criminals can cross to our side,” he said adding, “The river is helping us in preventing insecurity.”

By  Emmanuel  Masha

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