Interior CS Kithure Kindiki was on Sunday, June 25, handed the lead role in fighting small arms and light weapons within the Great Lakes region and the Horn of Africa.
A statement by the Ministry of Interior indicated that Kindiki was elected unanimously into the new role by representatives of the organisation’s 15 member states.
Interior Principal Secretary Raymond Omollo, who represented the country in the Democratic Republic of Congo, noted that the new role effectively expands the country’s scope of responsibilities in the efforts to stop the illicit arms trade.
Further, the operation is expected to foster sustainable peace and security in the region.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki speaking during a meeting with Lamu Security and Intelligence Committees on June 15, 2023.
“Kenya pledges unconditional support and commitment to this cause and I am certain that the role that the member states have assigned us today will make us even more aggressive in the fight against this menace,” the statement read in part.
The Council is comprised of ministers responsible for Internal Security in the member states.
PS Omollo also highlighted the government’s priorities indicating the prime focus on participative leadership in reducing the availability of illicit arms.
“We will strive to be a true partner who will not only lead by example but also foster an environment of collaboration, growth, and collective success,” Omollo added.
He added that the government is planning to promote innovative approaches to address the root cause of the vice – which has been exacerbated across various counties in the region.
In its proposals, Kenya will seek to leverage the power of sharing resources and expertise to step up disarmament operations and implement innovative security solutions tailored to community needs.
“We believe that in a holistic approach encompassing disarmament, demobilisation, and reintegration efforts, as well as robust community-based initiatives.”
“We intend to enhance coordination, regional organisations, and international partners to bolster our collective efforts to improve information-sharing and detect, prevent, and respond to the illicit trade,” Omollo noted.
Prior to the appointment, Kenya deputised DRC as chair of the Council of Ministers (CoM), the supreme organ that provides Regional Centre on Small Arms and Light Weapons (RECSA) with the necessary policy guidance.
Among Kindiki’s first assignments is to push for the elevation of the council’s influence in Africa by fostering peace and security initiatives.
“The 15 member states now want Kenya to officially submit a request to the African Union (AU) General Assembly to consider designating the organisation as an AU specialized agency on matters of small arms and light weapons,” the statement read in part.
Interior PS Raymond Omollo speaks at the launch of the 2021/2022 Annual NGO Sector Report at KICC on June 5, 2023.