Nairobi News


Privacy versus security debate rages

Nairobians have received Minister Ole Lenku’s directive  well but with a measure of reservation.

The directive requires Kenyans to organise themsellves in groups of 10 households for security purposes.

Some of them said the directive by Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Ole Lenku was a timely intervention in the wake of the Westgate shooting where over 70 people died.

However, others  raised doubts about its applicability and implications on privacy.

Excess powers

While some feared it would give the State excess powers to micromanage their lives, infringing on their privacy, others felt it held the key to finally rid the city of criminals.

Nyumba Kumi, is Swahili for an arrangement where households are clustered into groups of ten.

As such, they become each other’s keepers. A member of a cell (house) is then required to inform its head of all his or her movements.

In Tanzania where it is being practised, one is required to inform the cluster head of any visitor they are expecting, their relationship with them and the purpose of the visit.

Any security threat detected in any cell is immediately reported to higher authority for action.