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Kenya has launched a new US$160mn national police surveillance system, it has been announced

Developed and installed by telecoms operator Safaricom, the project involved connecting 195 police stations in Nairobi and Mombasa to 4G Internet, with the aim of directing operations and facilitating the sharing of information.

While it has gone live, the National Surveillance, Communication and Control System is still in the process of being installed in certain parts of the country.

Once fully completed, the system will be operated by the National Police Service using expertise from senior officers and communication experts.

Safaricom said that 1,800 tamper-proof, high definition and ultra-high definition CCTV cameras have been installed in Mombasa and Nairobi, which will be connected to a national command and control room at police headquarters.

The new system can recognise and analyse faces and movement from CCTV footage and relay the information to the command centre in real time.

The National Police Service has also received 7,600 modern communication devices and is training 3,000 officers to operate the system.

“We are well on track to deliver an intelligent solution that harnesses the power of technology to enhance security operations in the country,” said Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore, speaking at the first phase of the system handover. “Technology will provide our country with the ability to better respond to emergency situations requiring the interplay of competencies from the National Police Service and various disaster response teams.”

In recent years, Kenya has been faced by serious security challenges, mainly from terrorism and cattle rustling in many parts of the country.

These issues have impacted the tourism sector negatively, prompting the government to solicit the services of Safaricom in the development of an adequate security solution.

Mwangi Mumero

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