Police ready for August elections, says Inspector General Joseph Boinnet

Inspector of Police Joseph Boinnet (centre) address a press conference alongside Deputy Inspector General Joel Kitili (right) and DIG Samuel Arachi in Nairobi to update Kenyans on measures put in place to ensure peaceful elections in August. [PHOTO: DAVID NJAAGA/STANDARD}

Police have insisted they are ready to provide enough security during and after the August 8th polls.

Inspector General of police Joseph Boinnet has also stated they will be apolitical in the period and provide a secure environment for Kenyans to vote.

“We are set. We are up to the task. We are satisfied with the security arrangements so far and wish to assure Kenyans no agent will be partisan. We will be non-partisan,” he said.

He made the remarks amid concerns there would be challenges in many parts of the country and especially in northern Kenya and Lamu where Al-Shabaab militants have been staging attacks killing and displacing many.

Boinnet said they have been working with the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission to know where to deploy and the numbers.

“We have mobilized all needed logistics that will enable us provide a secure environment for the polls. We assure all they will vote,” he said.

The logistics include choppers, vehicles, boats and other anti-riot gear that will help them manage rowdy crowds.

Authorities say they have embraced a multi-sectorial approach to enhance peace and security in the country.

Boinnet met with his commanders and those from National Intelligence Service, Kenya Wildlife Service, Kenya Forest Service, Prisons and National Youth Service to review their preparedness for the exercise.

He said they will conform to the law in ensuring security for all and called for support from all stakeholders.

Up to 150,000 security agents will be used in providing security in the polls. Some of them who will be seconded from National Intelligence Service, Kenya Wildlife Service, Kenya Forest Service, Prisons and National Youth Service will be gazzetted as special police officers.

All the tallying centres will be adequately protected as well as polling stations.

Given that the 2017 General Elections is attracting unprecedented competitions among political parties and aspirants at both grass roots and national level there are more fears of violence.

Boinnet said his regional commanders have been holding regular meetings to review their plans and exuded confidence they are now ready for the polls, which many see as most challenging.

The European Union election observers have warned there could be violence in the polls because of many pending issues.