There is something rare about election and preparations to them. The decisions made in the days, months before really sends signals to what is important, and what is needed for the safety of the Republic. Now, it’s revealed, that it was not just whistling out of his mouth, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Joseph Boinnet, did yesterday. He and his organization, the security operations of the Police has purchased and prepared itself for massive demonstrations. As if they are prepared for an uprising, since the results might differ to the actual voting. Which in some regions should be in favor of NASA instead of Jubilee. However, alas, that is why the IGP have been busy with the Minister of Interior to get new merchandise and make ready for mayhem. The Police who are there to serve and protect, do not trust the citizen they are working for! Therefore, they have ordered dozens of new Armored Vehicles from South Korea, tons of tear-gas and other equipment to make sure the citizens stay behind closed doors and behave. Just look!
“At least a dozen new South Korean made riot control vehicles arrived in Nairobi at the weekend, increasing to more than 30, the number of water canons for police use to quell chaos. The fleet of new armoured vehicles with advanced features is in addition to a new consignment of anti-riot gear including teargas canisters, batons, anti-riot wear and guns that have come through the port of Mombasa. Security sources explained the new anti-riot gear has been distributed to various parts of the country in the past month alone as authorities prepare to secure elections and deal with violence should it break out” (Ombati, 2017).
“The vehicle, according to the manufacturer’s website, has capacity to mix the chemical from the cabin while water gun shooting. It has a nozzle of shooting distance of minimum of 25 metres and maximum 70 metres with an elevation of 90 degrees and rotation of 320 degrees. Each of the new trucks has two water cannons on top of the cabin. It also has a fully automated and centralised control system, a cabin protector and can carry seven crew at a time” (Ombati, 2017).
“Tonnes of tear gas canisters are also among resources that have been mobilised and sent to various places ahead of the polls” (Ombati, 2017).
It seems like the Jubilee government are afraid, they are nervous of the aftermath of the election. They seem to be on edge and wondering how it will go, since they have to threaten, spread fear and buy all of this expensive equipment to silence possible demonstrators. They do not trust the public and their will, when they are super prepared for violence, even when there is no reason to be alarmed. It is supposed to be peaceful elections, right?
It is right that the opposition has hold dozens of demonstrations against the Electoral Body of the Republic and the amendments concerning legislation towards the election. Not that the Jubilee did give much way, only the needed steps to stop the leadership from making their supports continue to rally. Still, the attempt of distrust and disengage the public. Seems very obvious, since instead of being in dialogue with the local leadership at the possible hot-spots. They are coming with tear-gas and anti-riot gear. Not talking, but planning to suppress the distrust from the public towards the Central Government. That is what the planned effort looks like. Not like Jubilee took time to talk and engage, but rather bought expensive riot-gear from South Korea. Like that going to solve the possible problem, if it there and known about.
The only thing it will do, it will quell the demonstrations and possible aftermath of the election, but the wounds are still there. This is not patching up the hurt. Instead, it is spreading fire, with more fire and hope it stop it. It could work, but what cost? When the left behind is burned land and no seedlings of hope for the future.
Shouldn’t the government have worked for a better solution and also had more faith in their citizens than expecting violence and demonstration, that is if the government and electoral bodies we’re prepared for a free and fair election, and not a rigged one. Time will tell, time will only tell. Nevertheless, these signs of possible oppression from the National Police Service does not give me green light. More of the red light and concern of the outcome. Since the Police and the authorities already prepare to use massive force against civilians. Peace.
Ombati, Cyrus – ‘More tear gas, guns arrive to deal with mass protests after August elections’ (17.07.2017) link: https://www.standardmedia.co.ke/article/2001247838/more-tear-gas-guns-arrive-to-deal-with-mass-protests-after-august-elections