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Be Vigilant, Be a Shujaa | Citizen Support Mechanism

Going by this year’s Mashujaa day theme; ‘My Kenya, My responsibility, We are heroes;’ It is worth acknowledging the fact that a 21 century ‘Shujaa' is one who is vigilant, one who is ready to report anything suspicious whenever they come across one because that’s how one helps prevent terrorist attacks.

In as much as all of us may not be as bold as Mwalimu Salah Farah, who lost his life by taking a selfless, bold step to protect his fellow passengers amid al-Shabaab terrorists in a Mandera bus attack in 2016, vigilance is every citizen's responsibility. Simple acts of being cautious whenever we come across suspicious items, people, or activities by not going near them but instead reporting, are enough to prevent injuries, fatalities, and property losses as a result of terrorist attacks.

The ability to identify suspicious items such as unattended luggage, strangers conducting surveillance on buildings; taking pictures, observing entrances, and CCTV installations is crucial. Such incidences ought to be reported! Moreover, understanding the signs and behaviors of terrorists and being vigilant about their activities both online and in their surroundings is key. This means reporting acts such as people conducting suspicious transactions, having multiple identities, buying unusual quantities of chemicals for no obvious reasons, and chemical handling equipment such as goggles, masks, and gloves.

As we celebrate this year’s Mashujaa day, as a country we are all heroes for remaining resilient and determined in the fight against terrorism. We have overcome and emerged stronger even after major attacks such as the 1998 bomb explosion at the Nairobi U.S. Embassy and the El Adde Camp attack that aimed at dispiriting us on the fight against terrorism. Therefore, let's keep the fire burning by staying vigilant and standing by the see something say something slogan.



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