Kenya News

Police, media conduct rehearsals on safety in political gatherings

Police officers and journalists in Kisii County took part in a rehearsal to check on their level of preparedness and capacity to manage crowds, as well as provide safety to the media during political rallies.

Speaking to the press after the event at Gusii Stadium, Kisii County Police Commander, Francis Kooli, said it is important to continuously sensitize the police officers on crowd management, so that they can check if there are existing gaps and mitigate them immediately.

“Today, we have rehearsed with the media because we realised that their safety is key in terms of the procedures to be followed, when there is lawlessness and how we can manage the crowd and evacuate guests,” Kooli said.

The County Police Commander pointed out that they have a mandate to provide all the mechanisms in terms of assessing the exit strategies, ensuring ambulances are there, as well as first aid personnel during political rallies.

“We normally change our strategies after assessing the situations that were there before. Right now, we have changed our strategies to bring media on board and ensure that the media and the police are not enemies, during crowd control or lawlessness,” added Kooli.

He pointed out that the police have a duty to ensure the general public is safe during a political rally disruption, through providing a safe passage for the members of the public to exit, bringing the situation to normalcy and minimizing injuries to all the participants.

Kooli urged media owners to provide protective gear for their staff, to ensure they are safe warning that anything can happen during public commotions.

In addition, he said they are holding community policing engagements and stakeholder forums in partnership with the media, to inform the public on safety measures and the importance of maintaining peace, during this electioneering period.

The Police Commander noted they are also engaging the county government structures, to allow the enforcement officers take part in the sessions, to learn how to engage a crowd.


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