Team formed to enhance security in Nyeri ahead of the August polls

Nyeri Kenya Editors Guild forum

Nyeri Central Deputy County Commissioner Joseph Mwangi speaks during the Kenya Editors Guild forum at the White Rhino Hotel on June 15, 2022. The administrator disclosed that the government has formed multi-agency committees to enhance security during this season.

Photo credit: Joseph Kanyi I Nation Media Group

Multi-agency security committees have been formed to enhance security in Nyeri County during the electioneering period.

The committees in Kieni East, Kieni West, Mathira East, Mathira West, Nyeri Central, Mukurweini, Tetu and Othaya sub-counties are to curb cases of violence.

Nyeri Central Deputy County Commissioner Joseph Mwangi on Wednesday said the team, composed of police, local administrators and Nyumba Kumi elders, are monitoring areas that have possible threats and security lapses to mitigate them.

“We are already aware that there could be security hotspots in our county and we have mapped them,” Mr Mwangi said.

The senior administrator spoke during a town hall meeting organised by the Kenya Editors Guild (KEG) at White Rhino Hotel in Nyeri town.

“We are also identifying areas where there is high usage of drugs and consumption of illicit brews among the youths. We have a collective responsibility of ensuring that our youths are not manipulated by politicians by being given drugs and illicit brews to cause chaos in campaign rallies,” he said.

“A majority of youths are vulnerable due to joblessness and that is why we have to help them not to fall into the traps of politicians.”

Mr Mwangi promised journalists that they would be protected while covering election-related events.

“We will protect you whenever you are covering the election. However, I urge you as media practitioners to avoid amplifying alarming fake news being spread by bloggers. Be factual in your reporting and we are ready, as administrators, to assist you in getting the correct information,” he said.

KEG member Francis Mureithi urged Kenyans to help the media in holding political leaders to account to make the right choices when casting their ballots.

“KEG seeks to conduct town hall engagements across different regions, bringing together members of the public, key duty bearers, journalists, editors, human rights actors and civil society partners. The engagements are meant to interrogate issues that contribute to credible elections,” said the Radio Africa Group digital editor.

Standard Media Group Mt Kenya regional editor Wainaina Ndung’u said the media would play its role of watchdog during the election period.

“As media houses, we have been interrogating manifestos being launched by various candidates and keeping track of whether they are actually being implemented. We have been conducting the variance between making promises and fulfilling the same so that we can inform citizens accordingly,” Mr Ndung’u said.

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission official Njambi Kariuki enumerated the timelines ahead of the August polls and urged journalists to be objective in their reporting.

She said the voter register was being scrutinised by audit firm KPMG and the work would be done by the end of the month.