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Give governors security

By The Standard | Updated Tue, January 10th 2017 at 00:00 GMT +3
Kilifi County Governor Amason Jefa Kingi (right) addresses journalists at Timboni primary School soon after his security details were withdrawn by the government

The withdrawal of the security detail of Kilifi and Mombasa County governors Amason Kingi and Hassan Joho has raised political temperatures. This is the second time such action is being taken and follows a familiar pattern.

It is in the public domain that the two governors are openly critical of the Government. Some in Government have argued that the two governors went overboard and disrespected the presidency. This argument notwithstanding, the country must not lose sight of the role of an opposition in a functioning democracy. The right to expression and divergent views is also guaranteed in the Constitution.

State House Spokesman Manoah Esipisu has distanced the Head of State from accusations the action against the governors was retaliatory because of their stands. The police department says this is normal reorganisation, yet the question arises; why only Mombasa and Kilifi, and after the President visited the areas?

In every respect, governors, as county chiefs, deserve to be accorded State security. Withdrawing their security detail without explanation could be counter-productive. Criminals taking advantage of a security vacuum to propagate evil acts could get the Government into an awkward situation. Security chiefs should stop acting impulsively where there are clear laws to guide their actions.

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