Al-Shabaab Youths Get State Amnesty.

The government has offered a three-month amnesty to youths in Northeastern County who have joined al Shabaab to surrender.

Regional commissioner Mohamed Birik said yesterday those who desert the group will be pardoned. He toured the border towns of Holugho and Masalani in Ijara constituency where suspected militants killed two non-locals two weeks ago.

Birik was accompanied by top regional security officers and area MP Sophia Abdinoor. He said the government was aware of a few Kenyan youths working with al Shabaab.

Garissa senator Yussuf Haji said one of the seven attackers was a resident believed to have been guiding the militants. “I want to assure those who will surrender within the three months period will be pardoned. This message should reach everybody. We will also ensure their safety,” Birik said.

The administrator directed chiefs and their assistants operating from urban centers to immediately go back to their duty stations, saying their absence was partly to blame for insecurity in parts of the region.

“It has come to our attention as government that some chiefs are permanently out of their duty stations and have settled in urban areas while drawing a salary. We will not hesitate to terminate their employment,” Birik said.

He said police reservists have been placed under their command and there is no reason for the chiefs to operate from outside their duty stations. Birik noted that although the government has put measures to restore and sustain security in the region, the residents have even a bigger role to play.

Criminals live within communities and it is necessary that residents volunteer relevant information to security officers, he said. Last week, leaders from Ijara presented a memo to Interior CS Fred Matiangi during a meeting at Harambee House, Nairobi.

The leaders identified community mistrust of the police as one of the major challenges to curbing insecurity in the area. They urged closer collaboration.

Source: The Star