The National Police Service has released a list of crime hotspots in Nairobi amid increasing concerns over a surge in muggings in several streets in the city.
In a report sent to newsrooms on Monday, November 14, the police service said the marauding gangs are targeting persons of all ages, business premises including M-Pesa shops and residential homes.
According to the report based on a survey conducted in the city recently, most of the criminals commit the brazen attacks in broad daylight.
Some of the incidents reported included muggings, assaults, robbery with violence, carjacking, murder, housebreaking and burglaries.
"Witnesses have stated that most crimes are committed in broad daylight," the report read in part.
The hotspots include Globe Cinema roundabout, Kipande road, Drive-In flyover up to KCA along Thika road, KCA underpass and Total exit along Thika road.
Other areas listed are Kangemi along Waiyaki way, ABC Place (Westlands) and CBD (River Road, Archives, Kirinyaga road and Fig Tree).
The police urged members of the public to exercise caution while visiting the areas and recommended the following measures:
- Pedestrians to be aware of your surroundings. Take note of parked cars, and individuals loitering around you.
- Avoid walking alone in the darkness, try as much as possible to get home before dark.
- Reduce the use of mobile phones, tablets and laptops in traffic (especially if you do not have tinted glasses)
- Do not carry ATM cards when not absolutely necessary.
- Evaluate the amount of money to be deposited in your M-Pesa account.
- Do not leave bags, wallets or any valuable item on the chair of your vehicle when parking in a public place as it attracts criminals.
- Keep your car doors locked and rolled up at all times.
- While driving home, look out for cars following you, look out for cars parked too close to your gate, watch out for unfamiliar individuals in your neighbourhood.
- Highly advisable to install CCTV systems in your homes.
- Those with security fences, ensure they are working.
The police advised members of the public to avoid fighting back or refusing to comply with the criminal gangs' demands if accosted.
In case of emergencies, the police urged members of the public to call the Nairobi Area Police County Control on 020 3556771.
Earlier, Inspector General of Police Japhet Koome called on police officers to restore order in the city amid rising cases of insecurity.
Koome, who spoke after meeting with Nairobi governor Johnson Sakaja, stated that the stability of the 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.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki also directed the police to deal decisively with the criminal gangs.
He said the government was determined to restore public safety in the streets of Nairobi and vowed to take the fight to the criminals.
“Those boys who have dared the government and want to tell us that they can take over the city and make it a center of crime, we’ve heard also heard you and therefore we are coming effective immediately," he said.
To ensure police officers are adequately incentivized for their difficult and often risky assignments, the CS promised that a comprehensive review of the salaries and the terms and conditions of all security officers will be undertaken.
“Shortly the government will initiate a process of engagement with a view to relooking at the terms and conditions that our officers serve under while taking into cognizance that for a very long term now, the terms and conditions of our officers serve have not been reviewed with a view to adjusting them to the cost of living.”
The CS also had a similar message for cattle rustlers and bandits who are active in the North Rift saying the government will expand its crackdown to include those abetting the crimes including financiers, spiritual leaders and traders in stolen animals.