Top Stories / National
Friday, 19 Aug 2016 14:49 EAT
Leaders from Machakos County led by Senator Johnstone Muthama, Deputy Governor Bernard Kiala, Kathiani MP Robert Mbui and Mavoko MP Patrick Makau have blamed top national security officials for the killing of five night guards in the region yesterday.
Senator Muthama has asked the cabinet secretary for Interior and Coordination of National Government, Joseph Nkaissery, and Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet to step aside for failing to protect the lives of innocent Kenyans.
Speaking at Mitaboni Market, where the five were brutally killed by a group of gangsters who attacked in the night, Muthama said that the security situation in Machakos had deteriorated in recent years, a trend he said was consistent with worsening security situation throughout the country.
Addressing the hundreds of demonstrators who were protesting the deaths of the five night guards at the market, Muthama said Nkaissery and Boinnet should resign and pave way for the appointment of officials who could oversee the security docket better.
“Cases of insecurity have gone up during this time of Nkaissery and Boinnet and they should step aside for failing to protect innocent Kenyans. It is a shame that innocent people can be slaughtered like chicken in a country like ours,” said Muthama.
The senator urged the government to build a police station in the area, noting that Mitaboni Market, despite its growing population and a big catchment area, had only a police post with a handful of officers. (Police posts are small outposts for the coordination of police work in underserved areas).
The protest also turned into a campaign against Governor Alfred Mutua, who has not delivered on his promise to install CCTV cameras in all the major towns in the county. Muthama, who had initially poked holes in Mutua’s plan to install the cameras, touted the potential ease the police would have had in identifying the attackers had the cameras been installed in accordance with the governor’s stated plans.
“I want to tell Governor Dr Alfred Mutua to fulfill the promises he made to the residents. He promised CCTV cameras and security lights in each town, if there were CCTV cameras and security lights this would not have happened,” said the senator.
Muthama also demanded the immediate transfer of police officers assigned in the area within seven days, failing of which the locals would organize vigilante groups and armed themselves with bows and arrows to protect themselves.
Hon. Mbui censured the police for using live bullets to disperse the demonstrators, saying the people had the right to protest as they did. He also called for the removal of the current area chief for abuse of office.
Kathiani MP Robert Mbui addressing the demonstrators at the town.(Photo: Oscar Ndunda/Kenya Free Press)
Hon. Makau blamed the county government for failing to resolve the health crisis. “I want to tell Governor Mutua to respect the people of Machakos. He should have dialogue with the striking doctors to end this stalemate because our people are suffering and dying. It is a pity for our people to die on the way to health centres in other counties,” said the Mavoko legislator.
The writer is the news editor of the Kenya Free Press