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State launches Sh37bn equipment upgrade project in war on organised crime

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Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki announced the ambitious project in Mombasa on Tuesday, when he commissioned 10 high-capacity armoured personnel carriers (APCs).

Kenya has initiated a robust five-year Police Equipment Modernisation (PEM) programme aimed at enhancing the country's security apparatus.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki announced the ambitious project on Tuesday during a ceremony at the Port of Mombasa, at which he commissioned 10 high-capacity armoured personnel carriers (APCs).



According to CS Kindiki, the Sh37 billion programme seeks to equip security forces adequately to combat terrorism, banditry, and other organised violent crimes that pose significant threats to national security.

“So far, Sh7 billion has been spent. We are working on receiving personal protective equipment and drones that can do surveillance and also attack remotely.”

One of the 10 high-capacity armoured personnel carriers (APCs) that Interior CS Kithure Kindiki commissioned at the Port of Mombasa on May 14, 2024, as part of a Sh37 billion security equipment modernisation programme. (Photo: Interior ministry)


Kindiki acknowledged that this is an ambitious step but said it will result in Kenya's possession of revitalised air asset equipment.

He said that each new arrival of modern security equipment brings Kenya a step closer to actualising the vision of a safer nation protected from criminal groups of all kinds.

“Our facilitation of our officers on the frontlines is nearing completion. We are at the tail end of assembling sophisticated air assets that will be deployed in the next few months.”

Interior CS Kithure Kindiki speaks at the Port of Mombasa on May 14, 2024, when he commissioned 10 armoured personnel carriers (APCs) as part of a Sh37 billion security equipment modernisation programme. (Photo: Interior ministry)


The minister further emphasised the importance of securing the country to facilitate economic growth and attract both local and foreign investments.

“These boys who have made our lives unbearable in northern Kenya, those others in Boni, and those in Marsabit and northern Isiolo ... be warned. We cannot make progress unless the country is safe. Investors cannot set up industries if they aren't assured of their safety," he said.

“The only way we can show gratitude to our officers is to invest part of the tax we pay to ensure that they are safe and have the equipment to protect and neutralise the enemies."

Some of the 10 high-capacity armoured personnel carriers (APCs) that Interior CS Kithure Kindiki commissioned at the Port of Mombasa on May 14, 2024, as part of a Sh37 billion security equipment modernisation programme. (Photo: Interior ministry)


CS Kindiki also spoke about the reopening of schools, directing security officers to ensure all students return by Friday. The reopening date had been postponed indefinitely due to the heavy rains and flooding. President William Ruto eventually set it for May 13, but some students are yet to go back for reasons including displacement.

Many families stayed in temporary shelters set up in schools across the country.

In addition to bolstering security, the government aims to address the issue of internally displaced persons (IDPs) by closing half of the camps and facilitating the reintegration of affected individuals into their communities.

Kinidki observed that over half of the IDP camps shouldn't exist.

"According to the weatherman's advice, the worst is over, and we anticipate no more people in IDP camps," the CS said.

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