Security plans have been drawn with less than three months to the August presidential polls and the number of active police deployment raised to close to 200,000.
At the same time, the government directed police to arrest politicians cited for hate speech and incitement on the spot and not to wait for orders from “above.”
During yesterday’s Inspector General of Police Conference held at Safari Park Hotel in Nairobi, IG Joseph Boinnet and 220 police county commanders converged to lay out security strategies for the electioneering period.
“We have prepared effectively for activities ahead and we are set for the bigger assignment.” Boinnet said.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery warned they will be impartial but very firm against those who will commit electoral offences.
“We have taken stringent measures that the country remains safe before, during and after the elections. We are going to fight any politician or citizen who disobey the law. We will give instructions to police to deal with you there and then. Nobody should doubt government resolve on this. ” Nkaissery said.
Nkaissery said politicians who incite citizens should be arrested immediately and processed for persecution but told the officers to be impartial in execution of their duties.
“I expect nothing short of peace and stability of this country.” Nkaissery said.
Boinnet confirmed the commanders have drew operational orders but insisted the political dynamics brought by entry of independent candidates must be captured to ensure safety during elections.
“Our job is to provide an enabling environment for the citizens to exercise their Democratic right in a safe and secure environment. Our work is clearly cut out. We will avail all the required resources.” The IG added.
In a closed door session chaired by Boinnet, the officers deliberated on security plans and pointed out possible security hot spots.
“It was agreed a security order will be prepared and channeled to the commanders to cover the period preceding, during and after elections.” A senior officer intimated.
Boinnet further directed that all officers on leave will be recalled way before the August 8 polls.
The senior officers present are Kenya Police Service county commanders, Administration Police Service Commanders and CID county commanders from the 47 counties.
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission has announced official campaigns will begin on Sunday this week.
Early this month, Nkaissery said they have a ready election security order outlining punitive guidelines against political leaders out to disrupt national peace during and after August presidential polls. Earky this month, the CS they will deal firmly with leaders either from the President Uhuru Kenyatta led Jubilee or opposition leader Raila Odinga’s led National Super Alliance according to the law if the attempt to cause anarchy.
Meanwhile, Nkaissery commended police commanders containing terrorist attacks but urged them not to lower their guard.
Other senior police commanders in attendance include Director of the Directorate of Criminal Investigations Ndegwa Muhoro, KPS Deputy Inspector General and his APS counterpart Joel Kitili and Samwel Arachi respectively.