By CYRUS OMBATI and ALLAN KISIA
More than 2,000 police officers have been deployed to Tana River in renewed efforts to tame the ongoing inter-communal clashes that have claimed more than 100 lives.
They include 1,800 officers who graduated yesterday from General Service Unit college in Embakasi, Nairobi.
Police Commissioner Mathew Iteere said the officers have been given clear instructions on how they would deal with the menace and are under guidance of senior officers, who are already in the area.
“They have also been supplied with commensurate logistics, including air cover to ensure that the crimes going on there are dealt with conclusively. A sufficient number of senior officers has also been sent to ensure the new officers work under the command and guidance of experienced officers to avoid the previous mistakes hence the approximate figure of 1,800 as opposed to 1,300 who graduated,” said Mr Iteere.
He made the remarks as President Kibaki ordered the arrest and prosecution of leaders fanning violence in the troubled region.
Kibaki held a meeting with Coast leaders and they agreed on the need for firm and decisive action to deal with insecurity in the region.
Galole MP Dadho Godhana did not attend the meeting.
“I direct police to take firm action against those inciting inter-communal hostilities,” said the president at the GSU graduation.
He said timely intelligence information must be mobilised through enhanced partnership between security personnel and wananchi.
Meanwhile, police have criticised calls by politicians to deploy the military in Tana Delta to quell clashes.
Police deputy spokesman Charles Owino said they are capable of handling the situation, but they have not been given the go ahead to use force.