Why we must remain vigilant for terror threats

Firefighters battling a blaze following the terror attack at Dusit D2 in Nairobi on January 15, 2019. [Edward Kiplimo,Standard].

The fight against terror is different from fight against illicit brew in the dungeons where they are brewed and consumed. Terrorism is more complicated.

It involves shadowy international actors who recruit, indoctrinate, radicalise, and train Kenyan youth, to launch attacks here and beyond.

Therefore, terrorism being an international phenomenon, the government continues to work with key partners and global allies.

That is the only way we can neutralise threats of these cross-border merchants of terror while ensuring our security agencies work optimally to secure Kenyans and seal our borders.

Policymakers are working hand in hand with our security agencies to institute a range of counterterrorism measures to make it extremely hard and painful to engage in terrorism.

Kenya continues to be a major target for terrorists due to its geo-strategic location and commitment as a frontline state in the fight against terrorism.

I urge the public to continue volunteering any information that can help keep our country safe.

Four years after Dusit, we have revised a couple of stratagems to improve our overall management of security issues.

These measures require constant review. As a matter of practice, we cannot discuss operational issues in depth but following are five broad-brush measures we have undertaken.

First, we enhanced inter-agency coordination to strengthen institutional synergy. This will enhance our security vigilance within our security agencies and around critical installations.

Interior CS Prof Kithure Kindiki. [File, Standard]

Secondly, we have sustained ground, aerial and maritime surveillance as we continue to use other complementary surveillance systems.

Thirdly, the legal framework under the Prevention of Terrorism Act and Security Laws has now enabled us to engage a raft of mechanisms for addressing extremism challenges post-Westgate and Dusit.

Fourthly, awareness of the whole chain of planning, financing and execution of terror is now an integral knowledge used to bolster our counterterrorism measures.

This means we no longer go for the executor alone. Instead, we target an entire beadwork of the parties involved and their covert network.

Lastly, our hawk-eyed security agencies have done a tremendous job of screening and profiling suspects and be steps ahead of criminals.

When I signed up for this job, I knew it wasn't going to be a walk in the park. It has not been. My team and I will do what we must do but we shall achieve way more if we get the unfettered support of the public.

-The writer is Cabinet Secretary for Interior and National Administration