The police reforms unveiled are opening up Kenya’s private security firms to an unprecedented windfall as police begin to pull out of non-core duties that have hitherto sucked their numbers. Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet confirmed that the police will now strategically pull out of Very Important Person (VIP) protection services and fade away from “Cash-in-Transit” operations among others.
He said the move will open up the two sectors to private security firms, under guidance of Private Security Regulatory Authority (PSRA) to innovate on new security solutions, including the possibility of arming them. The authority falls under the Ministry of Interior and is based in Harambee House. Former NGO Coordination board boss Fazul Mohamed is the new CEO/Director and is said to have taken the task to coordinate take-up of the services with gusto.
Earlier this year, the National Security Advisory Committee approved a proposal to amend the Private Security Regulatory Act to allow restricted use of arms by private security divisions handing critical services that will be dropped by Administration Police.
In May this year, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i was quoted saying that “the government will issue gun licenses to vetted companies who will in turn arm their personnel to conduct their businesses.”
Joseph Boinett, the Inspector General of the National Police Service of the Republic of Kenya, said the move to pull away police from the core duties is unstoppable and urged private security companies to brace up for the tasks. He said besides waiting for guns, private security companies invest in technologies that will dispel theft of cash. On VIP protection, Boinnet said thus far, he had scaled down the number of police officers involved in VIP protection from over 10,000 to 4,000