Interior Cabinet Secretary Prof. Kithure Kindiki has sent a stern warning to bandits and other criminal gangs that continue to crop up in some parts of the country weeks after assuming office.
In his first press conference on the security situation in the country on Monday, October 14, Kindiki said multi-agency teams had been deployed to the Northern region to deal with the banditry menace.
The CS warned that the government is not only targeting the bandits terrorising residents but the entire chain that has been the cattle rustling industry including financiers, beneficiaries and sympathisers.
Kindiki indicated that what is happening in the Northern part of the country borders crimes against humanity.
"It's increasingly appearing that what's happening in the Northern part of this country would very easily constitute crimes against humanity. Therefore the government is deploying multifaceted, multi-agency responses to the problem of banditry. We have information where they have been retreating to, we know the challenges that have been associated in the past in getting to them," he said.
"We want to make it clear as government that we are coming to dismantle not only the criminals themselves but also to bring down the entire chain that has been the livestock rustling industry: the financiers, spiritual supporters, the benefactors and those who purchase livestock stolen from Kenyans."
The response, the CS said, will be sustained until normalcy returns in the affected areas.
"The last few weeks the marauding gangs have dared the government of Kenya, and the message they have been sending has reached us... we are coming for you effective immediately and the response will be sustained until we set free our country from the fangs of bandits, criminals, murderers and profiteers of bloodshed," he said.
At the same time, Kindiki directed the police to deal decisively with increasing criminal activities within the streets of Nairobi as well as several urban centres in the country.
To curb the spate of crime, Kindiki said changes have been effected in the police command in Nairobi and multi-agency teams deployed to deal with the gangs.
Kindiki: Police won't be victimised
He assured the police that they won't be victimised as long as they discharge their duties within the law.
"I want to assure our officers who are in charge of various formations related to internal security, the government will support, facilitate and ensure that as you perform gallant sometimes risky service to the nation you will not be victimised"
"I urge officers to use the responses we are commencing within the law and comply with standing orders of the police, comply with the law relating to criminal conducts, criminal procedure code and the evidence act and the bill or rights related to this kind of activities," he added.
Earlier, Inspector General of Police Japhet Koome called on police officers to restore order in the city amid rising cases of muggings.
Koome, who spoke after meeting with Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja, stated that the stability of this nation should not be put in line.
"We cannot compromise on the stability of Kenya. It is a beautiful country. Our officers must be patriotic, we have a duty and job to do," he stated.
At the same time, the new police boss stated that officers are going to use all means possible to curb the rising cases of robbery with violence saying the culprits are acting out of peer pressure.
"There's no offence in law called mugging, it is robbery with violence and that is a capital offence. We are going to use all means at our disposal to ensure these young people acting out of peer pressure are dealt with properly," he noted.