Kenya Fires 63 Police Officers in Corruption Reforms
Sixty-three senior police officers have been fired amidst ongoing corruption investigations, the Kenyan National Police Service Commission (NPSC) has revealed.
The probe has revealed sweeping corruption within Kenya’s police force, with more than 1,300 senior police officers having been investigated over a 14-month period.
Among the 63 sacked was Administration Police Spokesman, Masoud Mwinyi, while the others consist of superintendents of three different rankings. The future of a further 29 officers will be decided after further investigations into their conduct.
A hierarchy of corruption
The investigations have revealed a hierarchy of corruption between senior police officers at various levels.
“During the vetting, investigations showed some of them were involved in corruption and were even doing it through their juniors,” said NPSC chairman John Kavuludi. “Through scrutiny of their accounts, the commission was able to establish that junior officers working in the traffic department regularly transferred fixed amounts of money to some of their seniors, suggesting that they had been given targets.”
Kenya’s police force has been labelled as the country’s most corrupt institution by organisations like Transparency International.
Kenya is investigating its entire police force, as art of a a reform package which was agreed after the signing of a new constitution in 2010. Police corruption was thrust under the spotlight when violence broke out after the controversial presidential elections in 2007, leaving more than 1,000 people dead.
The police force was accused of taking sides in the violence, but its corruption and misconduct have been far more widespread. However, many have criticised the ongoing investigations for overlooking a number of senior police officers, accused human rights violations and involvement in extra-judicial killings.
The investigation panel has endured a number of death threats since it started vetting police officers, including a severed head being sent to their office.