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Committee To Vet Passport Applications
East African Standard, January 19, 2004
A committee has been formed to vet Kenyans of Arab origin applying for
passports and national identity cards in Mombasa.
The move, ordered by the Government, is meant to resolve a
long-standing dispute over what has been viewed as rigid a
verification process for members of the community and Muslims in
Local Government minister Karisa Maitha said the team will be gazetted
by the Minister for Internal Security Mr Chris Murungaru, this month.
Addressing a public rally at Old Town at the weekend, Maitha said
President Kibaki had ordered the formation of the team to stop
discrimination against Arabic and Islamic communities because of
suspected links with terrorists.
"I have been sent here by the President to announce to you that this
problem is over," Maitha said.
He said the Presidentís order was in response to a memorandum
presented to him during his recent holiday in Mombasa by a group of
Muslims and Hindus led by the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims Mombasa
branch chairman, Sheikh Juma Ngao.
He said the committee will include elders from Old Town, Mayor Taib
Ali Taib and the District Commissioner.
It will be approved by the PC and finally Murungaru who will gazette
it before it starts its work, Maitha said.