A total overhaul of the officers manning police stations in North Alego will be carried out following complaints from the local residents who accused them of complicity in the rising crime wave in the area.
According to the County Police Commander, Michael Muchiri, a new Officer Commanding Police Station (OCS) will be sent to take charge at Kowet police station and a similar action taken at Ndere police post both of which were scenes of public protests after a marauding gang killed three people in Hono sub location.
Muchiri told a hastily convened public baraza to address crime in the area that other than the transfer of the officers, the national police service will also issue the new commander with a phone whose number will be made public for ease of communication with the public.
“Apart from this, we shall also have a community engagement to discuss insecurity in the area” said the county police commander during the meeting that was convened by Alego – Usonga Member of Parliament, Samuel Atandi at Hono market.
He called on members of the public to desist from subjecting suspects to mob justice, saying that it was not only against the law but also denies the police opportunity to get valuable information from the suspects.
Siaya sub county criminal investigations officer, Patrick ole Kilua who addressed the meeting said two suspects were helping them with investigations which, he added, were at advanced stage.
Ole Kilua said that they were in pursuit of some of the suspects who have gone underground, adding that no one will be allowed to walk scott free after conducting the heinous crime.
During the meeting, the residents lamented how their efforts to cooperate with the security agents to weed out crime in the area have failed, with the police releasing suspects whenever handed over to them.
A resident, Pamela Atieno said a known suspect flashed a pistol inside Ndere police post and threatened to shoot the public who were baying for his blood.
She said that the officers manning the two facilities had outlived their usefulness and, instead of concentrating in security matters, devoted their energy in collecting protection fees from chang’aa dens.
Her sentiments were supported by Mike Ochola who challenged the top police bosses to come clear on the relationship between a suspected gang leader and some of the police officers in the two stations.
Ochola said a policeman stationed at Kowet hurriedly left his post and hurried to Ndere to save the gang leader and even joined the suspect in drawing a gun against members of the public.
Alego / Usonga legislator, Samuel Atandi called for the transfer of the officers from the area and joined his constituents in demanding to know the fate of the gun that a suspected gang leader used to threaten the public.
Atandi at the same time called on chiefs and their assistants to form vigilante teams to help patrol their areas and promised to support such teams with weekly stipend.
Siaya County secretary, Joseph Ogutu who represented governor James Orengo challenged the police to ensure that the perpetrators of crime in the area were brought to book.
“The governor is sad with the occurrence and has said that as leaders, we shall support the funeral of the departed souls” said Ogutu.
Yesterday, angry residents stormed Kowet and Ndere police stations to protest the killing of three people by thugs on Saturday evening.
Police had to fire shots in the air and lob tear gas on the demonstrators who threatened to overran Ndere police post to fish out a suspected leader of the gang that has terrorizing the locals.
The demonstrators had earlier stormed two homes of the suspected members of a gang that they claimed was behind the insecurity in the area and set ablaze homes of some of the suspects.
According to the residents, the suspects named a businessman based at Ndere trading centre as their ring leader and as they marched to his shop, which is about 50 metres opposite Ndere police post, the businessman sensed danger and jumped into his motorcycle to seek refuge at the post.
The irate members of the public gave chase and stormed the police post while armed with crude weapons.
In the ensuing melee, a police van arrived and quickly whisked the suspect away to Siaya police station, leaving the irate demonstrators to vent their anger on the motorcycle which they dragged to the middle of the Siaya – Rang’ala road and set it ablaze.