The government will arm chiefs and their assistants in northern Kenya besides assigning them police officers and hiring police reservists.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki said the move is aimed at taming banditry in the region.
Speaking during a security meeting in Wajir County on Thursday, Prof Kindiki further directed Isiolo and Wajir County Commissioners to formalize peace committees composed of elders.
“The chiefs and their assistants will be vetted to identify those suitable to bear arms. The administrators cannot pursue and tame criminals using a baton. We will arm them to protect lives and property,” Prof Kindiki said.
The CS directed that a 20 -member team of elders be set up from Isiolo and Wajir to spearhead peaceful coexistence.
He said 200 national police reservists will be recruited in Wajir to support the police and chiefs in ending cattle rustling.
Prof Kindiki further said that the government would deploy more Anti-Stock Theft Unit police officers in the area.
“We cannot have investments and socioeconomic growth in North Eastern Kenya without lasting peace and security. This will be possible through improved policing,” he said.
The Interior CS was accompanied by Wajir governor Ahmed Abdullahi and deputy Inspector General of Police Noor Gabow.