Ruto warns coast police involved in drug trafficking
Deputy President William Ruto has given the clearest indication that powerful individuals linked to drug trafficking are on the radar of security agencies.
Police officers especially from the Coast said to have been compromised by drug lords have been subjected to internal disciplinary action while others are still under investigations.
Briefing journalists in Mombasa after chairing a meeting of top security officers in the region on Monday, Mr Ruto warned that the renewed war on drug dealers would not spare anyone, irrespective of their standing in the society.
“It does not matter who they are, it does not matter how much money they have, it does not matter how much influence they think they have, it does matter how much political clout they claim to have. We are firm in our resolve and we will deal with them firmly and conclusively,’’ he said at the Uhuru na Kazi Building Kazi building which houses offices of regional commissioner Nelson Marwa.
The DP spoke of a rejuvenated fight against drugs being led by officers from the combined of local and international security agencies who would stop at nothing to arrest and prosecute key suspected drug lords.
“We now have found the link and the coordination that is giving us better results in dealing with matters on drugs. The combined efforts of our security personnel and other partners including the US and others has given new impetus and and leverage on dealing with this menace,’’ said the DP who was flanked by Mr Marwa, Coast police boss Phillip Tuimur, county commissioner Evans Achoki and members of the county’s security committee.
What makes the fight against drugs even more urgent, said Mr Ruto, was the fact that it was linked to terroris, with the money from the illicit trade going to finance terrorism.
“It is a war that one feeds into another. Drug money is being used to finance terrorism and they are twin wars that we must win,’’ he added, saying that Kenya would no longer be a safe haven for drug lord.
“Those engaged in this business have already been given notice that the end has come, that there is no more space, there is no more room, there is no more time for them to engage in that trade,’’ he cautioned.
He also linked corruption to the killer business saying the government had pushed through Parliament legislation that would ensure that drug dealers “do not just go to courts ad get bail as if it is a simple exercise.’’
On the police officers who have or suspected to have been compromised by drug barons the DP said: “There is a lot that is happening around our security teams to ensure that the laxity that has existed in the past is dealt with firmly.’’
In his briefing, the Deputy President said he had discussed with the officers how to enhance security at key government installations such as the Port of Mombasa which has been notorious for theft of goods.
“Because of the importance of the port to the economy of the country and regional integration, the security of items at the port takes a very primary place and therefore we will be monitoring that situation on a monthly basis to make sure that we put it in the past that any item in containers or otherwise disappear at the port,’’ he said.
On the drought facing parts of the country, Mr Ruto said the government has not and would not import maize to feed those affected.
“All the food items that we are currently distributing all over the country is bought from local producers,’’ he said adding that no Kenyan would die of hunger because the government has enough to take care of the hungry.
Assorted food items such as unimix is being distributed to the hardest hit areas and the government would ensure that the items reach the targeted beneficiaries.
“We will ensure that we do not get reports of any Kenyan dying because of hunger or because of lack of food,’’ Mr Ruto who is on the fourth day of a voter registration drive in five counties said.
After the press briefing, the Deputy President addressed a meeting of Jubilee leaders and aspirants for the August 8 General Election at the Wild Waters in Nyali before heading to Kaloleni in Kilifi County where he was also slated to address local political leaders and later head to Voi in Taita Taveta for similar meetings and a public rally at 3pm.
On Tuesday, the DP is expected to issue title deeds to locals at Ziwani, in Taveta after which he would address two public rallies in Taveta town and Wudanyi before heading to Makueni and Machakos counties.