NPSC extends contracts of top police bosses

DCI boss Mohammed Amin. [Kelly Ayodi, Standard]

Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) boss Mohammed Amin and Deputy Inspector General of Police Douglas Kanja have been given a two-year contract, despite having attained the mandatory retirement age of 60.

The two police chiefs were given their letters of extension by National Police Service Commission (NPSC) chairman Eliud Kinuthia last Monday.

The decision to extend the tenure of the two police chiefs came despite a clear policy guideline by the Public Service Commission that no public servant will get a contract after retirement.

The two police chiefs will now work until April 2024 when their contracts will come to an end, sources told The Standard yesterday.

In February last year, then Public Service Cabinet Secretary Aisha Jumwa in a letter said all civil servants must leave office when they attain the retirement age of 60 and no officer would be allowed to continue serving on contract.

“It has come to the attention of the ministry responsible for public service that public officers who have attained the mandatory age as provided under the Public Service Act and are making numerous appeals to the commission for unjustified extension," read Jumwa's letter to the Public Service Commission.

“The purpose of this letter is to request that all extensions review cases be suspended and any existing cases be revoked to enable proper legislation and succession management guidelines be implemented across the public service," said the CS.

Public Service Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria who succeeded Jumwa in October last year maintained that no public servant would be allowed to continue serving on contract after attaining retirement age.

“When a public servant attains the age of 60, please go home. When some turn 58, they claim to have some disabilities so more time can be added to them. No Way! I have caught up with them," the CS said when he visited the NYS headquarters in Ruaraka, Nairobi.

The decision to award the two senior police chiefs with two years contract has now come as an anti-climax for some senior police chiefs who were looking forward to taking up the positions.

The Standard learnt that prior to the extension contracts, there was a protracted battle between the Eliud Kinuthia-led NPSC and some senior officials who were lobbying for the two police bosses.

So serious was this battle, that on one Monday afternoon, some senior government officials are said to have called the NPSC boss with instructions to release the letters to the police chiefs.

“He (the Government official) said it had been agreed on by the top government leadership but still the commission declined to release the letters," said an official at the NPSC head offices in Sky Park, Wetlands.

Sources on Monday told the Standard that after the NPSC boss declined to award the two police chiefs with the contract letters, what followed was intense pressure from top government officials and some CSs.

“We were under intense pressure and as a commission, we had agreed that all the police chiefs must retire after attaining retirement age," said another commissioner.

At the time, NPSC was hoping to resolve this stalemate by seeking an audience with President William Ruto who was on an official trip to Italy.

“We could not just award the contracts despite the huge pressure we faced. As commissioners, we felt that any communication said to have come from the head of state needed to be verified," said the commissioner who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The sources said the stalemate was eventually broken on February 15 at Sagana State Lodge where President Ruto and his deputy Rigathi Gachagua were holding a meeting with leaders from the Mt Kenya region.

It is during this meeting that the President is said to have been briefed on the matter and he finally okayed the decision to award the two police chiefs with a two-year contract.

“He (Kinuthia) NPSC boss was summoned to Sagana where after discussion, the letters of contract were awarded," said a senior official familiar with the matter.