The people of Kenya were wary of a situation where the military may be used in domestic law and order
It is not correct, nor fair, to accuse the Jubilee Government of being the cause of insecurity in Kenya. Long before Jubilee took over the leadership of this nation, Kenya was already experiencing a rise in the rate of crime in the country. But the question is not whether Jubilee is responsible for the insecurity in Kenya. It is whether the Jubilee Government has failed in its endeavours to secure the country.
My submission is that it has not only failed to secure the citizens but is actually responsible for the continuing insecurity. On page 11 of the harmonised manifesto of the Jubilee coalition, it says that “crime and security threaten our national security. Criminals stalk our cities while disorder threatens our rural communities. Terrorism and instability are a real and present threat along our borders.” It says that in order to fulfill this “first duty”, it shall carry out “something of a revolution in Kenya; a revolution at its most basic that will … keep Kenya safe and secure both internally and externally”.
Jubilee in its manifesto said it would do the following to curb insecurity in Kenya.
1. Shake up the National Intelligence Service. The only “shake up” it has conducted is to replace the Director-General of National Intelligence Service, who had resigned of his own volition anyway.
2. Pass a new Prevention of Terrorism Act. No such law has been passed nor proposed.
3. Strengthen the new Independent Police Complaints Authority. While the performance of authority is commendable, there is nothing to show about strengthening it.
4. Increase the police-citizen ratio within five years by recruiting an extra 15,000 police officers per annum.
The recruitment of officers is not only below the rate promised, the little that has been undertaken is mired in corruption, nepotism and tribalism so much so that the last one was nullified by a court.
The modern security equipment and transport provision has collapsed.
5. Create a new border security force to defend the nation’s borders and provide additional security support to border counties.
So far, not even a policy paper has been launched on the border security force.
6. Rationalise security budgets and subject procurement of security equipment and services to public scrutiny and competitive bidding.
Just a few months ago, the government single sourced the provision of security surveillance systems from Safaricom at a cost of Sh15 billion. There was no competitive bidding, public scrutiny or transparency in the tendering as promised in the manifesto.
7. Introduce technology to deal with cattle rustling. Nothing has been heard about this promise that is in the manifesto.
Overall, it is difficult to tell what exactly the input of Jubilee in the improvement of security is, that is apart from its continuing attempt to introduce the social engineering known as “Nyumba Kumi”.
The little it has done, if any, is such a far cry from the “something of a revolution” promised in the manifesto that it would be fair to conclude that Jubilee has done nothing to stem the decline of security in Kenya.
And the future does not look good either. The government’s policy of militarising internal security will make things worse.
The people of Kenya, when they promulgated the Constitution 2010, were very wary of the situation where the military may be used in domestic law and order. Under Jubilee, the military is slowly replacing the police in the maintenance of domestic law and order.
This will invariably have two results. The first is the general decline in respect for human rights. While the police are trained to protect the citizen, the military is trained to attack enemies. In domestic situations both the victim and the assailant, are citizens.
The second danger in militarizing internal security is what is called “the weapons’ effect” which is that the mere presence of a weapon leads to more aggressive behavior in human beings.
Paul Mwangi, Chairman, Okoa Kenya Committee of Experts