Govt to recruit more police reservists to fight Al-Shabaab

Wednesday January 25 2017

Police IG Joseph Boinnet during his tour of

Police IG Joseph Boinnet during his tour of Wajir County on January 25, 2017. He announced that the government will recruit more police reservists in northern Kenya to help in the fight against Al-Shabaab. PHOTO | BRUHAN MAKONG | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By BRUHAN MAKONG
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More police reservists will be recruited in Wajir, Mandera and Garissa counties to boost security following frequent attacks by Al-Shabaab, Inspector-General of Police Joseph Boinnet has said.

Speaking to journalists in Wajir Town on Wednesday, Mr Boinnet did not, however, reveal the number of reservists to be recruited.

Northern Kenya leaders, led by Mandera Governor Ali Roba, had asked the government to hire 900 local reservists in the three counties who understand the region’s terrain to patrol and help security personnel in repulsing Al-Shabaab.

Mr Boinnet said the recruitment process is underway.

He said the State is following the relevant legal procedures in the recruitment.

SECURE POLICE STATIONS

Security has also been beefed in police stations along the Kenya-Somalia border like Diff which has been overrun a number of times by Al-Shabaab.

The number of police officers in the stations, he said, has been increased.

Diff Police Station was attacked twice by the Shabaab militants in 2016.

On the frequent destruction of telecommunication masts in the counties by the insurgents, Mr Boinnet said police are in talks with Safaricom, Airtel Kenya and Telkom Orange to find better ways of securing the equipment to avoid further damages that have resulted to heavy losses.

BORDER PATROLS

Mr Boinnet denied claims that some anti-personnel carriers (APCs) are not being used to patrol frontier counties.

He said the APCs have “greatly improved” the level of security in the counties and the country at large.

“The APCs are, in fact, playing a vital role in securing our country,” he said.

He later met police from Wajir County to address the challenges they are facing.

His tour, he said, was to review the level of preparedness of the officers in the region and address challenges facing them.

“I am here today to visit our officers and thank them for their dedicated service to our country and also review their level of preparedness,” Mr Boinnet said.

On Tuesday, the police chief was in Mandera, a day after suspected Al-Shabaab attackers raided the town and killed a police reservist.