It is a chilly cloudy afternoon at Shisejeri village in Ikolomani constituency and Arnold Mudi sits pensively outside his semi-permanent house as he shuffles through a photo album.
The 42-year-old former Administration Police constable and assistant chief has been frantically seeking justice to no avail for the past 16 years after he was sacked as a police officer.
In 2006 when he was employed as an officer and posted to Modogashe Police Post Division in Garissa, his dreams of helping his family were high.
But the dreams were short-lived after robbers stole from one of the schools he was guarding. They must have taken advantage of the fact that he was new both in the service and the area.
The father of five together with his colleague were interdicted barely 11 months into service on February 6, 2007, and later dismissed from work on April 29, 2007.
They were charged with failing to prevent theft that happened on January 24, 2007, at NEP Girls Secondary School at Garissa in what used to be North Eastern Province.
Both were slapped with a fine of Sh20,000 or one year in prison for failing to prevent a robbery where Sh98,000 was stolen.
On November 14, 2012, Mudi and his colleague got a lifeline after their sentence by the magistrate court was quashed by Judge Lydia Achode of Nairobi High Court raising their hopes of getting their jobs back. But that did not happen even after they petitioned their employer to reinstate them.
Mudi gave up and decided to return to his village where he applied for an assistant chief’s job that was advertised on November 2014.
He was lucky to get an appointment letter for the job at Shisejeri Sub-Location in Ikolomani constituency, Kakamega County effective June 11, 2015.
“I applied for the job while in Nairobi in 2014 and in 2015, I was called for the interview. I passed and was given the job. I had high hopes of recollecting myself back after the National Police Service Commission refused to reinstate me back to my job,” he said.
The ex-cop took over the job as an assistant chief putting on another crown. He, thereafter applied for a certificate of discharge from the NPSC.
He was serving without a salary pending the discharge letter. The letter never came and in 2021.
“Things were difficult, I failed to get the discharge certificate and my term as assistant chief was terminated over what was termed as non-disclosure for failing to avail the discharge letter and yet I had worked for six years as an assistant chief without salary,’ said Mudi.
Mudi blames the NPSC for his woes and the agony he has gone through and he now only appeals for help from the President to intervene and help him get justice.
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“I have walked into all offices but have never received help. I now seek the intervention of President William Ruto. I know he has the goodwill of helping and bringing reforms in the disciplined forces,” said Mudi.
He says many cases police officers go through similar trouble once unfairly fired from duty.
Mudi fears that were it not for his family to stand firmly and support him during the difficult times, something worse could have happened.
“I was young just after police training and I had hopes and plans of assisting my family after the death of my both parents. Life has been hard for me, my young family and my siblings who depended on me but ended up dropping out of school,” said the former officer.
“My life has been miserable, I wouldn’t wish anyone else to go through similar experiences, especially police officers who passionately and patriotically decide to serve their nation only to be mistreated,” said Mudi.
When contacted for a comment, National Police Service Spokesperson Dr Resila Onyango said the ex-officer’s case was out of her mandate and asked Mudi to seek an audience with the NPSC.
“I feel his plight but he (Mudi) should take up the matter with NPSC because what the officer is alleging is under the purview of the Commission and not NPS. If he fails to get an audience with them, then we may step in,” she had earlier told The Standard on the phone last month.
NPSC boss Eliud Kinuthia clarified that only the Inspector General of the Police has the power to issue a discharge letter which Mudi has been chasing for over 10 years.
However, Kinuthia requested more time to interrogate issues about the failure to have the ex-cop reinstated as ordered by the High Court after Mudi’s dismissal by the lower court was quashed.
It waits to be seen if Mudi, who has resorted to small-scale farming on a one-acre parcel of inheritance land will get justice.