What you need to know:
- Marwa said warning letters should be given to chiefs in areas that have been witnessing deadly attacks.
- Marwa said chiefs in all the areas where Al-Shabaab has been conducting attacks have been acting recklessly by taking bribes.
Coast regional coordinator Nelson Marwa has disbanded all community policing groups in Lamu County and ordered the formation of new ones, saying the old ones had been greatly compromised.
Mr Marwa said most of the groups in the region were formed by chiefs who are corrupt, a situation that saw the committees being infiltrated by criminals.
He spoke at Mahrus Hotel on Lamu Island on Sunday when he met top security officers and residents.
Mr Marwa directed Lamu County Commissioner Gilbert Kitiyo and his deputy Louis Rono to ensure the speedy formation of new community policing groups that will perform their duties in a professional manner, without undue influence.
The regional coordinator accused Lamu chiefs and their assistants of corruption, saying this had contributed to rising insecurity in the devolved unit.
He said chiefs in Lamu have a tendency of taking bribes and allowing herders from outside and criminals to be in the county.
This was happening yet the national government earlier ordered the outsiders to go back to their respective counties with their animals.
According to Mr Marwa, the administrators accept any amount in bribes to allow criminal elements to operate within the county and even include them in the community policing groups, without caring about the effect of their actions on the security of the county.
“That’s why I am disbanding all the community policing groups here from today. Let new ones be formed, with all communities represented,” he said.
Mr Marwa said chiefs in all the areas where Al-Shabaab has been conducting attacks and killing residents, especially Hindi and Witu, have been acting recklessly by taking bribes and allowing the terrorists to hide among the locals while posing as herders.
He said information remains the most effective tool in the war on crime and called on members of the groups that will soon be formed to volunteer information on suspicious individuals or activities to the police for prompt action.
Mr Marwa suspended one of the chiefs in the county for allegedly sleeping on the job.
“I have sent home the Hindi chief where four people were butchered recently. We can’t have people risking the lives of locals like that,” he said.
He also ordered Mr Kitiyo and Mr Rono to write warning letters to chiefs in areas that have been witnessing deadly attacks despite their presence.
“They must tell us where they were when these people were being killed,” Mr Marwa said.