Split in security command forces stall in Kenol probe

Thursday, October 8th, 2020 00:00 |
Church leaders praying at the scene where two people were killed when chaos erupted on Sunday Photo/PD/Rebecah Wangari

It has emerged that top police commanders are getting instructions from different quarters, including skipping the chain of command if the latest incident is  anything to go by.

In one of the cases in Murang’a on Sunday, a very senior officer based at Vigilance House called the county commander and directed him to withdraw officers from the area which was to be visited by Deputy President William Ruto.

The directive by a senior police officer to withdraw officers was supported by two senior government officials plus two other influential politicians – a woman MP and a senior male politician.

Following the killing of two people in Kenol, the Inspector General Hillary Mutyambai directed two senior detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) and the Director of Internal Affairs Unit (IAU) to move to the ground and establish what had transpired.

The probe took a dramatic twist after the IAU director Mohammed Amin and his team had commenced investigations were recalled to Nairobi and directed to hand over the statements to detectives from the DCI.

The Amin-led team had sought to establish if the officers were negligent in performing their duties.

While the DCI was to concentrate on the criminal aspect of the incident, the IAU detectives were expected to establish if the officers conducted themselves appropriately and whether there was negligence on their part.

They were also to establish if there was prior intelligence and whether the officers acted on it, with a view to taking action against top commanders found to have been negligent.

Conflicting directives

That police headquarters has been issuing conflicting directives and the fact that the investigations could have hit a snag is partly contributed to this broken chain of command.

On Sunday, for example, the IG directed the DCI and the Unit to immediately investigate the matter and have both MPs Ndindi Nyoro (Kiharu) and Alice Wahome (Kandara) summoned for grilling.

The Police service had indicated through the official Twitter handle that the two, among others, were to appear at the Nyeri offices to assist police with investigations. Five days later, the legislators have not been summoned for grilling.

“The Inspector General’s directive to track down and arrest the politicians could have been issued prematurely. It points to lack of synergy and coordination,” a source told People Daily.

On Wednesday, Wahome said she has neither been summoned nor called by the police over the matter.

“I am still waiting for the police to act on the IG’s orders. But I am not concerned, I have committed no crime and should not be worried at all,” said Wahome.

On his part Nyoro also said he had not received any call from the police and only read the summons through the social media.

“I am not surrendering to police and I will not be used by murderers to cleanse their mess. They can track my phone…they know my whereabouts…

They know for sure I was not involved. I have not gone into hiding and I don’t intend to do so,” said Nyoro.

Some senior officers who sought anonymity have faulted the IG for ordering the arrests even before investigations were complete.

There are special circumstances where we arrest before investigations are concluded.

The detectives have however said they will only make arrests after the investigations are concluded.

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