Govt To Use Boda Boda Riders As 2022 Polls Peace Ambassadors

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    Interior Cabinet Secretary (CS) Fred Matiang'i speaking to the press in August 2019.
    Daily Nation
  • The Ministry of Interior has announced that it would involve various stakeholders in order to reach out to the population as part of the peacebuilding initiative aimed at maintaining peace and order during the 2022 electioneering period.

    Interior CS Fred Matiang'i on, Wednesday, August 25, affirmed that his Ministry is focusing on active social groups such as the boda boda operators, matatu welfare associations and saccos within the transport sector.

    He added that they would bring together critical role players in every sector in order to reach the mass population. 

    "We are focusing on active social groups such as the boda boda and through the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA), we want to begin building structures where we directly engage with matatu owners and matatu welfare associations in various areas and saccos," Matiang'i stated.

    Matiang'i said that involving the various sectors would be crucial in the overall agenda of maintaining calm bearing in mind their extensive knowledge of their areas of operations, routes and type of clientele, hence the need to leverage on this in the run-up to the 2022 General Election.

    He added that his team has embedded groups that would be collecting data on a day-to-day basis in order to monitor suspicious activities within the country. 

    Speaking in Limuru, the CS affirmed that his Ministry has mapped out potential hotspots across the country and that more attention would be given to these areas.

    CS Fred Matiang'i before a parliamentary committee in Mombasa on August 13, 2021
    CS Fred Matiang'i before a parliamentary committee in Mombasa on August 13, 2021

    He noted that, through this initiative, every Kenyan has an opportunity to shape governance and democracy in the country.

    Matiang'i further pointed out that they would conduct community-based dialogues by involving senior administrators who would work together with community leadership based groups. 

    “As the security sector, we do not conduct elections, we facilitate the IEBC to do it. We have to ensure we have peaceful elections and transition," the CS stated.

    "We are committed to see to it that not a single bullet is shot, no citizen is hurt, and every Kenyan has the opportunity to take part in shaping governance and democracy in our country.”

    Matiang'i also challenged the youth to actively seek elective offices in the upcoming polls and promote politics based on peace and value.

    "The country needs firm and sincere leaders who will stand up to the challenges we face, stare down at cartels and will not engage in all these pretences that we see." 

    He lauded the efforts by the security agencies in the country, commending them for moving in swiftly to deal with cases that pose threat to the public, drawing an example from the arrest of terror suspects in Mombasa early in the week.

    The CS also warned Kenyans against misuse of social media, saying those found culpable of propagating hate speech will be held to account.

    "We’re concerned about the vitriol, insults and character assassination on social media. But there’re no intentions to gag free speech. We will uphold rights and freedoms. We however want to make it clear there will be consequences for abusing the same," Matiangi stated.

    The CS has been adamant in his approach to ensure the country experiences a peaceful election and to negate the recent violence witnessed when Kenyans head to the polls every five years.

    An image of boda boda riders
    Boda Boda operators wait for customers at a stage.
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