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Security officials in Diani out to curb reemerging criminal gangs

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Recent incidents have left a trail of victims nursing serious injuries at Msambweni Referral Hospital, where they recounted harrowing experiences with the gangs.

Police in Diani, Kwale County, have launched an operation to weed out resurgent juvenile machete gangs terrorising the area. The authorities are urging residents to collaborate with security agencies to tackle these gangs, which have taken advantage of recent protests to perpetrate violence and fear among locals.

Concerns peaked among residents following a spate of fearless daylight robberies and assaults committed by these reemerging machete-wielding gangs. Diani, renowned as the bustling commercial hub of Kwale County, has been marred by incidents of violence since the resurgence of these criminal elements.

Speaking to the Eastleigh Voice, Kwale County Commissioner Stephen Orinde emphasised the collaborative nature of the response. "We have assembled a multi-agency task force to restore Diani to its former tranquility. The initiative aims to deploy a formidable police presence, prepared to take decisive action against the gangs disrupting the peace and security of the area," he said.

Orinde reported that seven gang members have already been arrested, with some having been taken to court and others still in different police stations in the region awaiting charges.

The county commissioner urged the youth to be ambassadors of peace rather than engaging in criminal activities. "Do not waste your lives. Engage in something constructive; crime only leads to death," he warned.

Recent incidents have left a trail of victims nursing serious injuries at Msambweni Referral Hospital, where they recounted harrowing experiences with the gangs. The attacks, which occurred on Tuesday and Wednesday, targeted multiple individuals, sparking outrage and fear among residents.

Orinde condemned the actions of the gangs, affirming that authorities will bring back Diani to its former glory. "We will not allow these criminals to jeopardise the safety of Diani, threatening the livelihoods of its residents and posing a risk to tourists," he said.

The severity of the situation has prompted authorities to adopt stringent measures to swiftly curb further violence and restore public confidence. Local residents expressed relief at the heightened security measures but remained cautious.

"We hope this operation will bring lasting peace back to our community," said Mary Musili, a business person operating a food stall in Darad, reflecting the collective sentiment of many who have endured sleepless nights fearing for their safety.

Msambweni OCPD, Francis Achoki, emphasised the urgency of the operation, stating that the county cannot afford to sit idle while the panga-wielding gangs instill fear in the people of Diani. As the operation gains momentum, the focus remains on apprehending the perpetrators and dismantling their criminal networks.

"We are prepared to be relentless in our pursuit of justice," said Achoki.

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