Safaricom Installing A $172 Million Anti-Terror System In Kenya Amidst Travel Advisory
As of today May 16th, 2014, the US Embassy in Kenya will be shutting down and remain closed for two days next week. This could go on for longer if necessary said the embassy spokesman Tom Hart, in reaction to Pentagon issued alert that the threat of terrorism in Kenya has risen significantly.
Media houses both local and international are reporting news that hundreds of foreigners are booking flight out of Kenya in fear of their safety. The departure of these foreigners comes after a travel advisory against Kenya has been issued by the U.S Department of State, British Government and the Australian Government. While it is understandable why foreigners might be fleeing from Kenya, there are decisive actions being taken by the Government of Kenya and private stakeholders to beef up the security.
Safaricom, the leading mobile service provider in Kenya is set to install a security communication system worth Ksh.14.9 billion (about US$172 Million). The security communication system will be able to link up all security agencies across Kenya, in a move meant to fight the rising level of terrorist activities across the country.
On its part, the Government of Kenya is set to allocate Safaricom, a spectrum worth Ksh.7 billion on the first half of this project, to build up a high speed 4G Network that will be exclusively used by the Kenyan Police Force. The system will enable the police to use the HD definition CCTV cameras fitted with facial recognition technology hence be in a better position to identify and track down suspects. The CCTV camera will also be used to monitor police activities to ensure no police is sleeping on the job.
The initiative will also see to it that the police are supplied sophisticated radio communication devices fitted with SIM Cards and cameras. This will enable the police to send images taken from crime scenes in real-time to a central security database for quick evidence analysis. The county of Nairobi will be the first to have the security communication system installed in 60 stations within this year, and Mombasa County will soon follow with 20 stations being installed within the next 18 to 24 months.
But perhaps the Kenyan government needs to take faster measures to beef up security, as of now local media are running with Breaking News headlines as a reported incidence of multiple explosions has just occurred hours ago in the busy Gikomba Market in Nairobi.