Mandera woman rep wants curfew lifted

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By MANASE OTSIALO
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Mandera County Woman Representative Fathia Mahbub wants the State to lift recently extended curfew orders.

In a statement, Ms Mahbub said the extension of curfew orders by three more months was unfair to the local community that has suffered in the past seven months.

“The government has better ways of ensuring security of Mandera [besides] extending curfew that is affecting the locals socially and economically more so denying them freedom [of] worship,” she said.

“As the people’s elected representative I demand that the national government lifts the curfew with immediate effect,” she added.

Ms Mahbub said that it is the government’s duty to ensure the county is secured, adding that the fast rising political temperatures are not cause for insecurity.

“The holy month of Ramadhan is around the corner and these orders are going to interfere with the normal programme of fasting and prayers,” she said.

The MP described the government’s citing of politics to extend the curfew as a lame excuse.

The curfew was first imposed on Mandera in October 2016 and later extended for three months in December of the same year.

According to Ms Fathia, the Public Order Act is usually imposed by a government for a short period in order to calm a situation and to bring back sanity and normalcy.

“What is happening in Mandera has no parliamentary backing as required by law and it seems the imposer of this punitive order wants to [confine] residents of Mandera,” she said.

She said it is the responsibility of the government through its security organs to provide safety to residents of Mandera during the day and at night.

“Security cannot be maintained by imposing a curfew for over a year. The State’s efforts to turn the curfew into a routine security process in Mandera is unacceptable,” she argued.

She said medical emergencies at night cannot be attended to for fear of being arrested or shot at by security agencies.

“Mothers in labour are having difficulties in reaching hospitals, a problem that needs to addressed,” she said.

Already several local human rights groups have moved to Garissa High Court to challenge the order by Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaisserry extending the curfew from March 28 to June 28, 2017.



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