Harambee Avenue closed as Security Bill debate hots up
18 December 2014, 12:13
Nairobi - Nairobi was descended upon by hoards of police and security personnel as debate on the dividing security bill took centre stage in parliament.
With opposition leaders promising a protest march Thursday to oppose debate on the controversial security bill 2014, security was lifted several notches as the government prepared for a backlash from protesters over the enactment of the bill.
City streets were filled with paramilitary police, some on horses, others with dogs as they sought to quell any protests over the bill.
And with chaotic scenes in parliament witnessed on national television as MPs haggled over the reading of the bill and very nearly descended into chaos, the nearby Harambee Avenue, which houses the office of the president and his deputy as well as other key government ministries was closed off to pedestrians.
" We have been told to close off Harambee Avenue to pedestrians, an Administration Police officer who did not want to be named, told News24.
The closure was obviously to try ensure there are no spill overs from parliament to Harambee Avenue, the officer added.
Officers were also placed at other strategic points all over the city, with plenty ready for action along Moi Avenue, Kenyatta Avenue and downtown Nairobi, where there are most likely to be elements associated with the march, another officer confided to News24.
Transport points such as Railways bus station, Kencom bus station and Tom Mboya street also had a quite visible presence of police.
The protest march had been called Tuesday by opposition leaders who demanded the Security bill, which they describe as draconian be dropped by the government.
The reading and enaction of the bill was set to take place later Thursday.
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