Officers to get special training on border security as visa-free rule takes effect

Interior Principal Secretary Raymond Omollo. [John Muia, Standard]

In an effort to enhance surveillance, the government is providing training to its officers on how to manage entry and exit border points.

This initiative comes as Kenya anticipates an imminent influx of foreigners following a recent presidential declaration stating that, starting next month, all nationals visiting the country will not require visas.

The training aims to broaden officers' knowledge of security, illegal immigrants, and contraband goods.

Officers selected for training will be drawn from various agencies, including the Kenya Police Service, Kenya Revenue Authority, the Immigration Department, the National Intelligence Service, and Kenya Bureau of Standards.

Internal Security Principal Secretary Raymond Omollo, speaking during the launch of the Border Security and Control Curriculum, said it would be mandatory for all government officers at border points to undergo training.

He said: "The launch embodies the commitment of the government to safeguard our borders. It is a significant step to ensure security and efficiency at our points of entry and exit."

According to Dr. Omollo, the curriculum will equip officers with competencies to stay updated on current affairs and global best practices in border management.

During the Jamhuri Day celebrations, President William Ruto announced that beginning January next year, Kenya would be a visa-free country.

"It shall no longer be necessary for any person from any corner of the globe to carry the burden of applying for a visa to come to Kenya," said Dr. Ruto.

However, the declaration has elicited mixed reactions from Kenyans. Former Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui expressed concerns, saying the decision is ill-timed and could jeopardise Kenya's security, especially given the instability in many neighbouring countries. Omollo said the curriculum will enhance the securitisation process of border points and improve the delivery of effective services.

"We must give our front-line officers skills necessary to navigate border management,’’ he said.

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