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February 19, 2019

Kavuludi , police chiefs clash on hiring and firing

National Police Service Commission chairman Johnston Kavuludi /MATHEWS NDANYI
National Police Service Commission chairman Johnston Kavuludi /MATHEWS NDANYI

The National Police Service Commission will today hold a crucial meeting to unlock the stalemate over contentious recruitment of new police officers and termination of several hundreds who failed the vetting.

Last Friday, the commission failed to agree on the planned recruitment of 5,000 new conscripts and a proposal to sack 300 police officers who failed the test.

The eight-member commission comprises Johnston Kavuludi, Murshid Mohammed, Mary Owuor, Ronald Musengi, Shadrack Mulu and Inspector General Joseph Boinnet and his deputies Edward Mbugua and Noor Gabow.

Read: More than 400 traffic cops dismissed for failing vetting - Kavuludi

Boinnet and his deputies have objected to the sackings as well as the recruitment until a new commission to succeed the Kavuludi one comes into office.

They argue that their decisions are likely to be challenged in court, with barely a month before Kavuludi and his team exit office.

Yesterday, Kavuludi confirmed today’s meeting and also revealed that the term of the current commissioners ends on October 3.

“Some of the issues are for internal consumption while others are for public use, we should be able to give you details after the meeting,” he said.

Kavuludi and his four civilian colleagues have been pushing ahead with the two items before their exit but they have faced resistance from their police counterparts on the commission.

See also: Kavuludi team verifies 3,739 junior cops' degree certificates

Growing suspicions

Highly placed sources told the Star that there has been growing suspicions between the commissioners, with Kavuludi and his civilian colleagues reading mischief in the police chiefs’ reluctance to conclude the two agenda.

The police chiefs are also suspicious of their civilian counterparts’ push, with barely a month to their retirement. According to an earlier tentative plan of the commission, the recruitment of fresh police officers was to be conducted by mid-August so that they report to the police training colleges by mid-September for orientation and documentation in readiness for their training from October 1.

Boinnet and his deputies reportedly want the recruitment postponed to give them more time to deal with command challenges that the service is currently grappling with.

They want more serving police officers trained in leadership and command instead of additional police officers.

Sources familiar with the police operations said there are more police officers than mid-level commanders in the ranks of inspector and sergeant. After recruiting 40,000 police officers in the last five years, the service has found itself short of commanders in the above ranks.

According to the police standing orders, an inspector commands 32 police officers while a sergeant is in charge of 18 police officers.

To achieve this, the service needs to train and promote 1300 officers to the ranks of inspector and 2,222 police sergeants to cover the command structure.

More: NPSC cancels recruitment of 1,215 police officers in 36 centres

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