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Kenya Law Group Demands Security Secretary’s Resignation

  • Peter Clottey

Residents gather behind destroyed structures after gunmen attacked Mpeketoni, Kenya, June 16, 2014.

Residents gather behind destroyed structures after gunmen attacked Mpeketoni, Kenya, June 16, 2014.

The chairman of Kenya’s Law Society (LSK) says his group has issued a 14-day ultimatum to Interior Security Cabinet Secretary Joseph Ole Lenku to resign after accusing him of incompetence following the back-to-back terror attacks in Mpeketoni that left more than 60 people dead.

The LSK has also issued a similar resignation ultimatum demand to the Inspector General of Police, David Kimaiyo.

Eric Mutua says the LSK will legally seek authority from the courts to force the cabinet secretary to resign if he refuses to adhere to the group’s two-week ultimatum.

The Somali-based Islamist insurgent group al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the attacks in Mpeketoni as well as a second attack in a nearby village on Monday.

Mutua says the Interior Security Cabinet Secretary Ole Lenku failed in his responsibility to ensure the country’s security agencies are properly coordinated to prevent the second round of attacks, which happened in the same area.

“[He] has failed in his duty to guarantee the safety of Kenyans because we cannot have a situation where an attack occurs today, policemen are sent on the ground, and tomorrow there is another attack in the same area. That means there is a lot of laxity, it means that the security operatives or the machinery is not coordinated, and as a result, we think and we believe that the buck must stop with that secretary for that portfolio,” said Mutua.

He says Ole Lenku and other security chiefs are to blame for failing to prevent Monday’s attack.

Mutua says it is unlikely that Ole Lenku will resign in spite of the LSK’s demands. But, adds that the group will legally pressure the cabinet security secretary to resign from his position.

“If we manage to proceed in a judicial manner, and we get a declaration that he has failed in his duties, and we get a declaration that he is not fit to hold office then if he does not vacate office, we can go after him because he has no immunity against a suit and we can go after him in terms of being cited for contempt of court,” said Mutua.

He says the LSK has been previously successful in forcing a traffic minister Kimaru to resign.

Supporters of Ole Lenku say demands for his resignation are politically motivated.

The supporters called for unity as the government continues with efforts to launch a full scale investigation into the attacks.
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