Interior CS Kindiki explains police raid at three Karen homes
The government has now confirmed raiding three homes in Nairobi’s Karen area in search of 23 firearms allegedly used to perpetrate illegal operations in the country during the ongoing anti-government protests.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki, in a statement to newsrooms on Friday night, said security agencies had been tasked to search the area as part of a broader operation which seeks to weed out civilian firearm holders and leaders of known criminal gangs.
The statement, coming after former President Uhuru Kenyatta said his son Jomo’s residence in Karen had been raided, noted that the firearms recovered are supposed to be inspected to ensure that they have not been used unlawfully.
“Today afternoon, an operation has been going on targeting three homesteads within the Karen area where a total of 23 firearms, some of which are suspected to have been used in illegal activities are kept,” CS Kindiki said in the statement.
“Today’s operation is part of a broader operation targeting scores of firearm holders who are reasonably suspected to be availing firearms not only for purposes of supporting violent protests but also other illegal activities.”
The Interior boss added: “For the avoidance of doubt, security agencies are authorized under the Firearms Act (CAP 114) of the Laws of Kenya to inspect premises where firearms are kept, to require civilian firearm holders to produce them for inspection and ballistic examination where it is reasonably suspected that such firearms or ammunition may have been used or expended outside the law.”
Kindiki revealed that a suspect was arrested on Wednesday at the beginning of protests while in possession of crude weapons, documents and Ksh.42 million which authorities believe was being used to fund crime.
The CS said the man was found in possession of such weapons as 14 machetes, 24 swords, 46 rungus, as well as over 300 sachets of assorted narcotic drugs including cannabis sativa and cocaine.
“On 19th July 2023, a prime suspect was arrested while preparing to distribute a large number of crude weapons to facilitate criminals to inflict violence on the public during the last three days of violent protests,” stated Kindiki.
He has consequently refuted claims that the raids are political, reiterating that the government will continue to pursue firearm holders in Nairobi to root out all thos aiding and abetting crime.
"The operation will proceed to cover civilian firearm holders in Nairobi and other parts of the country who may be using the weapons in their possession to jeopardize our national security," he stated.
"The operation is purely of a security nature and neither its politicization nor sensationalisation will deter law enforcement agencies from ensuring that the Country remains safe and stable."
Former President Kenyatta decried alleged harassment of his family by government saying the raid at his son's Karen residence was conducted by unidentified officers who claimed they wanted him to surrender firearms in their possession.
The agitated retired Head of State further slammed the government for what he termed as an attempt to intimidate those closest to him, instead of just going for him directly.
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