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Security chiefs in Nairobi on Friday destroyed gambling machines in the intensified war against illegal gaming businesses.

At least 324 gambling machines and 239 Shisha apparatus from 11 sub-counties in Nairobi were destroyed in the operation.

Regional coordinator Kang’ethe Thuku decried an increase in cases of drug abuse in slums as a result of many youths engaging in gambling.

He said school-going children are not spared, hence the need to destroy the machines that encourage idleness and lack of productivity among youth.

A number of Shisha apparatus were also burnt during the event at Camp Toyoyo Grounds in Makadara sub-county.

Thuku said the security officers had a responsibility to deal with crime-related activities in Nairobi for residents’ safety.

“We must also with drug peddlers and video shop owners who show our children dirty movies,” Thuku said.

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He appealed to the residents to inform the police of suspected criminal activities in the area.

“Locals have a better knowledge of the criminals than the police since these people live among you.”

Youth representatives Eric Ochieng’ and George Joash lauded the police for seizing and destroying the machines.

“If the matter is not addressed now, it will not be easy to achieve development among the young people,” Ochieng’ said.

“The government should provide job opportunities for the youth so that they don’t idle and get into such traps as betting and smoking shisha.”

Thuku promised to hold special meetings with employers to employ the rehabilitated youth.

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