Matiang'i: Brace yourself for inconveniences caused by security threats

Interior CS Fred Matiang'i at Kamiti prison on November 18, 2021.

Interior CS Fred Matiang'i has urged the public to brace itself for ‘inconveniences’ informed by security threats posed by political unrest and other events in neighbouring countries.

He said: “We have raised the level of alertness and effected far-reaching changes."

The CS cited screening systems at the airports and the SGR.

Matiang'i went on, "We are not out of the woods yet. We are in an unusual space because of what is happening around us."

He spoke outside the Kamiti prison after three terror convicts who have been on the run after escaping from the maximum-security facility on Monday were flown back.

The trio was captured in Mwingi, near the border of Kitui and Tana River counties after a massive manhunt.

The search was conducted by special teams drawn from the Anti-Terror Police Unit, the DCI, and other security agencies in collaboration with the public.

Matiang’i witnessed the dramatic arrival and reincarceration of the trio at Kamiti.

He praised security agents for their swift action and described the short-lived escape as a vital lesson learned in securing prisons and other correctional facilities in the country.

“The mistakes that were committed here on Monday are unforgivable. It was a very frightening and horrific dereliction of duty.

"What happened here was a rude awakening that there are certain lapses that we need to deal with. We have officers that we suspect failed in their duties, we will ensure that the law takes its course and we bring all those involved to justice,” he said.

The CS also announced that the government has heightened vigilance across the country and more efforts directed at surveillance to detect and deal with potential threats.

He said the Prison Service will work closely with the Ministry of ICT to install modern, technology-driven security monitoring systems in prisons and other correctional facilities.

According to Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai, the escapees were captured deep in a forest and are suspected to have been headed to Garissa, with their final destination suspected to have been Somalia.

They were flown back to Kamiti in a police helicopter amid tight security by officers from the ATPU and are expected to face fresh charges of attempted escape from lawful custody.

The CS was with his ICT counterpart Joe Mucheru, Principal Secretaries Zeinab Hussein (Correctional Services), Karanja Kibicho (Interior and Citizen Services), Jerome Ochieng (ICT), DCI boss George Kinoti, and Nairobi Regional Commissioner James Kianda among other top security officials.