government will prioritise the procurement of modern weapons and equipment including
personal protection gear for police officers working in cattle rustling and
Interior Cabinet Secretary Prof. Kithure Kindiki said specialised teams deployed to the North Rift and officers engaged in counter-terrorism activities will be the immediate beneficiaries of sophisticated air and land weapons under the Police Equipment Modernization Programme.
Addressing specialized teams drawn from the General Service Unit (GSU), Rapid Deployment Unit (RDU), Critical Infrastructure Protection Unit (CIPU) and Anti-Stock Theft Unit (ASTU) in Kakuma, the CS said the investment will reinforce the ongoing operation to stamp out insecurity in traditional hotspots and minimise fatalities and injuries to officers in the line of duty.
“We have taken a decision to upscale and revitalize the equipment modernization programme and acquire more air and land assets as well as personal protective equipment to enable you perform your work better and efficiently…When you are protecting your fellow citizens, your own lives must also be protected from danger.”
He said the necessary funding had been secured and disbursed for the program adding that the Government would pump more resources into police welfare with President Ruto expected to soon unveil a taskforce to review their terms and conditions of work.
“As you continue serving our country, the government is also thinking about your welfare and the welfare of your families. The Head of State will soon unveil a taskforce that will look into your welfare and compensation.”
Prof Kindiki visit follows a recent attack on police in Turkana that left eight officers dead. It was the latest deadly ambush on police officers on duty in the area.
In 2014 for instance, 42 police officers were massacred by armed bandits in the County. Also targeted for review is stress reduction and management programmes.
The CS announced officers who have been serving in volatile workstations for long will be transferred to less stressful stations.
“Many of you have not been able to see your families for a long time. We should make it a bit feasible for your families to have a better life even as you serve the country in these difficult circumstances.
To complement the operation against cattle rustling and banditry, the CS said a further 630 National Police Reservists will soon be recruited and deployed after thorough vetting and training.
“We will make banditry, terrorism and cattle rustling a painful and costly experience for the perpetrators. We will finish them before they finish our people. We will pre-empt, thwart and neutralize the threats that they pose.”