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Ruto: Government on top of Al Shabaab menace

05 May 2014, 18:35

Nairobi - Deputy president William Ruto says the government is on top of the al-Shabaab menace but also insists that Kenyans must stay vigilant at all times.

Following the latest attacks on commuter buses over the weekend which left seven people dead and over 100 injured, the deputy president assured Kenyans that the government was strongly dealing with the matter.

Below is his full statement.

" Terrorists have perpetrated several outrages against unarmed civilians in public spaces in our country with the criminal intention of instilling fear and causing despondency among Kenyans. In their typically cowardly fashion, the criminals have moved into the general population as the center of planning and execution of terrorism.

" All our security agencies have been working coherently and indivisibly and because of this synergy; innumerable criminal activities—including planned terror attacks— have been disrupted. When confronted with something as unique and dangerous as terrorism, even a single act of terrorism makes hundreds of successful deterrent measures seem unhelpful. The Government has done its best, and will not relent until the country is safe. All of us must agree, and this bears repetition, that our collective security is a shared
responsibility; every person must play his or her part in maintaining unwavering vigilance. All arms of Government must play their full part, and every citizen must also fulfill their patriotic obligations.

" Every Kenyan must take a keen interest in what is going on around them, and must be ready to provide information to security agencies on anybody and anything with a suspicious appearance.

" Our world has changed since the 1998 bomb attack, and September 11, 2001. Everywhere in the free world, vigilance has pervaded every facet of life for everyone. Kenyans must realize now that we live in this world, and begin to adjust accordingly. If every Kenyan becomes vigilant about personal security, there will be little or no room for opportunists seeking to harm to execute their evil schemes. The security agencies will pursue, apprehend and bring the perpetrators to account. For this reason, we call on the Judiciary to be a strong partner in the war against terror.

" We call on all players in the justice, law and order sector to stand with Kenyans. The Constitution provides a robust framework of civil liberties, which ALL Kenyans are meant to enjoy. The liberties must work for Kenyans, not against Kenyans. Records indicate that many terror suspects have absconded bail and put themselves beyond the reach of law enforcement. Among them is Fuad Abubakar Maswab, who is believed to have fled to Somalia whilst out on a Ksh 10 million bond. He is co- accused with Jermaine John Grant and had been arrested while in possession of explosives.

" Jamal Mohamed Awadh and Suleiman Mohammed Sayyed were similarly on bond. Family confirmed that they both died on May 3rd, 2014, while executing a bomb attack in Mombasa. Those who have fled to Somalia intend to continue their terror activities. While they are abroad, the cases against them cannot proceed, seriously impairing the quest for justice and law enforcement. Likewise, at least 22 persons accused of terrorism are known to be out on bond operating freely among the innocent and peaceful citizens. The particulars of these cases are available.

" The Kenya Defence Forces was deployed into Somalia to dismantle Al Shabaab operations, networks, training and indoctrination bases, which posed grave danger to Kenya and the region. Al Shabaab had mounted several incursions into Kenya, and intended to destabilize the region as a whole. Because of the remarkable success of our effort in Somalia, al Shabaa operational bases have been substantially weakened. Unable to confront our security agencies directly, the terrorists have now resorted to soft targets to pressure Kenya into relenting and withdrawing from Somalia. We will not relent. We will not withdraw until Somalia has a stable and secure government free from terror.

" But the singular fact that cannot be denied is that our troops in Somalia have greatly destabilized Al Shabaab’s operations and created relative peace and security in that country. To recall our troops will provide a safe haven for the criminals to recruit and arm terrorists in Somalia who will eventually pose an even greater risk to Kenya and the region. Some of the suspects involved in these dastardly acts are Kenyans initially recruited into Al Shabaab cells in Somalia for training and radicalization who have now
returned to perpetuate terrorist activities in Kenya.

" The Government is also aware of the existence a local network of sympathizers and facilitators residing among the general population. Just like terrorists, these terror collaborators will face consequences.

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- News24


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