President Uhuru Kenyatta has today announced some key police reforms that are expected to bring about efficiency in the police service.
The announcement on the reforms, which are anchored on structure, command and housing was made as Uhuru officially launched the Policy Framework And Strategy On Reorganisation Of The Police Service and the 2018 National Security Conference at the Kenya School of Government in Nairobi.
NEW POLICE UNIFORMS
The reforms include a new police uniform, which a section of Kenyans have already taken to social media to criticize, saying its “ugly”
“These reforms are aimed at making the police a service that is respected rather than a force that is feared,” Uhuru said.
INTEGRATION OF REGULAR AND ADMINISTRATION POLICE
Uhuru also announced that 39, 680 Kenya Police Service and 24,572 Administration Police will be integrated into general duty police officers under the command of Deputy IG- Kenya Police Service.
“That will give us a total of 64,252 Police Service General-duty Police, given the unified command we can expect better security for Kenyans,” said the President.
The Deputy Inspector General, Kenya Police Service will now focus on public safety and security while the Deputy Inspector General Administration Police Service will focus on protective and border security as well as combating cattle rustling and banditry.
In the new police dispensation, the Deputy IG APS will be in charge of the Border Police Unit, currently known as the Rural Border Patrol Unit, whose core role will be dealing with transnational threats. The unit will be composed of 6,000 officers.
The Deputy IG APS will also be in charge of a new unit that will integrate the Security of Government Buildings (SGB) and the Critical Infrastructure Protection Unit (CIPU) which will have a total of 13,053 officers.
The Deputy IG APS will also be in charge of a new unit that will bring together the Kenya Police Service Anti-Stock Theft Unit and the Administration Police Stock Theft Prevention Unit and its strength will be raised to 5,000 officers
NO POLICE HOUSING IN BARRACKS
Under the new police reforms, officers will nolonger be housed in barracks and will only be paid a house allowance so that they can seek accommodation among the community.
“To solve the problem of housing police and prisons officers, and to better integrate them with the Kenyans they serve, the policy of mandatory and free housing for junior officers in institutional houses is hereby abolished. Instead, house allowances for all ranks of these officers will be provided,” said the Head of State.
President Kenyatta ordered the National Treasury to factor in the new allowances in the supplementary budget.
Uhuru said the reforms will go a long way in raising the morale of the security officers by improving their conditions of service.
A unified police command was also unveiled. This will comprise of; (i) One Regional Police Commander (RPC), (ii) One County Police Commander (CPC) (iii) One Sub County Police Commander (SPC), and (iv) Officer Commanding Police Station (OCS)/Ward Commander in charge of a Police Station and its Posts/ Patrol Bases.