Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i has dismissed as lies claims by Deputy President William Ruto that National Police Reservists (NPRs) were withdrawn from the conflict-prone Kerio valley to punish him.
Speaking during the Presidential Debate on Tuesday night, Ruto said the move to withdraw the NPRs back in 2019 in areas prone to bandit attacks such as Elgeyo Marakwet and Kerio Valley was politically motivated.
“I have deployed my personal resources to deal with that situation because I know it was a political agenda; the withdrawal of the National Police Reserve (NPR) was really an unfortunate act but because it was intended to punish William Ruto,” Ruto said.
He added: “Never mind that many people lost their lives, is a real tragedy, but that is the nature of our politics in Kenya, unfortunately.”
In a rejoinder, however, CS Matiang’i on Wednesday dismissed Ruto’s sentiments saying security deployment is informed by the security environment and consultations with local leaders.
“As we speak right now we have National Police Reservists (NPRs) in some parts of North Rift there has never been a time where we have withdrawn NPRs from North Rift or any part of the country. What happens in the security sector is that reviews are done from time to time depending on what is needed in a particular area,” said the CS.
“And in most cases, consultations are done with local groups… In some areas wananchi themselves and even their political leaders tell you we a need a redeployment of NPRs.”
The CS castigated the DP, urging political leaders to refrain from politicizing security matters.
“To be very honest I don’t like commenting on some of these petty political things because some people lie all the time like it is a career. You saw those lies yesterday. They lie about anything probably the only true thing about themselves is their name,” said Matiang’i.