Security tight as beach festival kicks off in Diani, Kwale County

Saturday December 9 2017

Diani Beach Festival

Some of the 500 skydivers from over 32 countries register for the Diani Beach Festival at Safari Beach Hotel on December 9, 2017. The festival will be hosting a 10-day skydive boogie, kite surfing competition, water sports among other events. PHOTO |WACHIRA MWANGI | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By FADHILI FREDRICK
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Security has been beefed up in Kwale County during the Diani Beach Festival (DBF) which kicks off Saturday and ends January 2, 2018.

Police officers from various units including the General Service Unit (GSU), Administration Police (AP) and regular police could be seen patrolling the streets of Diani as locals and visitors flocked the resort town to mark the three-week event.

The festival is an event which seeks to showcase Diani as a holiday destination in a bid to attract tourists from around the world.

It will be officially launched by Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala.

The festival is taking place at Alliance Safari Beach Hotel where there will be bars, lounges, restaurant, Christmas shopping stalls and VIP areas.

Speaking to Nation by phone Saturday, Kwale County Commissioner Ngumo Karuku said security has been beefed up in the entire county and those attending the event are guaranteed of their safety.

SECURITY

He said police officers are on high alert, guarding all public places where locals and tourists are congregating for the festival.

“We have mobilised enough resources [to ensure] the festival goes on well. But we must keep vigilant and let the police know immediately you spot suspicious activity so that we can have it checked out as we celebrate,” he said.

Mr Karuku appealed to locals to cooperate with security agencies in ensuring peace prevails throughout the festival and be ready to report any suspicious persons or activities which they feel might jeopardise security.

"We are assuring locals of 24-hour security in hotels and bars where guests have already booked in for the festival," he said.

10,000 VISITORS

Over 10,000 local and international visitors are expected in the county to witness an array of activities including sports at the Diani beach.

Some of the participants will include 500 professional skydivers from 37 countries as well as local enthusiasts.

Skydivers include those from the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Poland, United States, Hong Kong, Australia, Denmark, Dubai, South Africa, Spain and Egypt.

Other activities planned for the festival include kite surfing, fly boarding, scuba diving, jet skiing, slacklining, cycling, quad biking, deep sea fishing, yoga, kids club adventure week and an air sports exhibition.

The event has been sponsored by Moet Hennessy with support from recently ranked five-star hotel – Swahili Beach and English Point Marina.