Written by Oscar Nkala
The Kenyan Ports Authority (KPA) says it has installed more than 400 Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras as part of an electronic surveillance fence around the port of Mombasa as it moves to tighten security around ports nationwide.
KPA managing director Gichiri Ndua told local media during a tour of the Mombasa facility that once commissioned, the new integrated security system will give the port 24-hour security surveillance and enable the KPA to deal with global maritime security problems such as smuggling and piracy and meet global port security standards.
‚ÄúWe now have a state-of-the-art port security system in place which we shall officially commission soon. This puts our port under 24 hour (security) surveillance,‚Äù Ndua said. The system has been installed by Magal Security Systems, an Israeli company which specialises in maritime security and surveillance systems.
The new system will also link all security and surveillance activities at Mombasa port automatically to the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPF-SC). Mombasa is one of East Africa’s busiest port and transit point for goods moving between Africa and Asia and from Asia to South America through the Horn of Africa.
Securing vital national installations such as ports has become vital for Kenya following the advent of piracy, human smuggling, the illegal narcotics trade, ivory smuggling and the operations of international terrorist outfits in its territory, especially in the coastal areas around Mombasa.
Last year, a spate of armed attacks by suspected members of the separatist Mombasa Republican Council (MRC), which wants to set up a separate state around Mombasa and the coastal areas, left 29 police officers dead.