Police Ranks: How to Identify Kenya Police Ranks & Badges

  • You see them everyday, but do you understand the meaning of the various badges seen on police officers' uniforms?

    The Kenya police ranking can be physically recognized with the kind of badges they wear on the shoulders of their uniforms.

    This chain of command ensures that the police service operates in a more organized manner following a particular hierarchy.

    This article brings you the different badges depending on the ranks of the officials in the Kenya Police Service and their details as provided by the service.

    What are the functions of the Kenya Police Service?

    The Kenya Police Service is a national body in charge of law enforcement in Kenya.

    It is subordinate to National Police Service which is headed by Inspector General of Police who exercises independent command over the Service.

    The Kenya Police is headed by the Deputy Inspector General.

    As outlined in Part III, section 24 of the National Police Service Act, the functions of the Kenya Police are: 

    •    Provide assistance to the public when in need

    •    Maintenance of law and order

    •    Preservation of peace

    •    Protection of life and property

    •    Investigation of crimes

    •    Collection of criminal intelligence

    •    Prevention and deduction of crime

    •    Apprehension of offenders

    •    Enforcement of laws and regulations with which it is charged

    •    Performance of any other duties as may be assigned by the Inspector General in accordance with the law

    How to Identify Police Ranks in Kenya

    1. Inspector General

    Shoulder Badge: Crossed scimitar sword and swagger cane surrounded by a laurel wreath, surmounted by two lion badges.

    Gorget Patches: Red velvet, 4 cm wide and 9.5 cm long pointed at the top with one vertical row of three gold embroidered oak leaves (without acorn), small golden Service button 2 cm from point of the patch.

    Cap Peak: Two rows of twisted oak leaf gold lace.

    Lanyard: National Police Service colors.

    Aiguillettes: Gold colored aiguillettes when wearing a ceremonial dress.

    The name ‘National Police Service’ is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    2. Deputy Inspector General

    Shoulder Badge: Crossed scimitar sword and swagger cane surrounded by a laurel wreath, surmounted by a military pattern star and a lion badge.

    Gorget Patches: Black/maroon velvet, 4 cm wide and 9.5 cm long pointed at the top with one vertical row of three silver embroidered oak leaves (without acorn). A small silver/gold Service button 2 cm. from point of the patch.

    Cap Peak: Two rows of twisted oak leaf silver/golden lace.

    Lanyard: Respective Service colors.

    Aiguillettes: Silver/gold colored aiguillettes when wearing a ceremonial dress.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    3. Senior Assistant Inspector General

    Shoulder Badge: A crossed scimitar sword and a swagger cane surrounded by a laurel wreath surmounted by a lion badge.

    Gorget Patches: Black/maroon velvet, 4cm wide and 9.5 cm long pointed at the top with one vertical row of three silver/golden embroiled oak leaves (without acorn). A small silver/golden service button 2cm from point of the patch.

    Cap peak: Two rows of twisted oak leaf silver/golden lace

    Lanyard: Respective service colors.

    Aiguillettes: Silver/gold colored aiguillettes when wearing a ceremonial dress.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    4. Assistant Inspector General

    Shoulder Badge: A crossed scimitar sword and a swagger cane surrounded by a laurel wreath surmounted by two military pattern stars.

    Gorget Patches: Black/maroon velvet, 4cm wide and 9.5 cm long pointed at the top with one vertical row of three silver/golden ornament of twisted 2cm silver/golden braid with a small silver/gold service button 2cm from point of the patch.

    Cap peak: One row of twisted oak leaf silver/golden lace.

    Lanyard: Respective service colors.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    5. Commissioner

    Shoulder Badges: Two crossed spears surrounded by a laurel wreath surmounted by one military pattern star.

    Gorged Patches: Black/maroon Velvet, 4cm wide and 7.5 cm long pointed at the top with one vertical strip of silver/golden cord, with a small silver/gold service button 2cm from the point of the patch.

    Cap Peak: One row of twisted oak leaf silver/golden lace.

    Lanyard: Respective Service colors.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    6. Senior Superintendent

    Shoulder Badge: Two military pattern stars surmounted by a lion badge.

    Gorged Patches: Black/maroon velvet 4cm wide and 7.5 cm long, pointed at the top with one vertical strip of silver/gold cord, with a small service button 2cm from the point of the patch.

    Cap Peak: 1.5 cm silver embroidery edged with silver/gold cord.

    Lanyard: Respective Service colors.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    7. Superintendent of Police

    Shoulder Badge: One military pattern star surmounted by a lion badge.

    Cap peak: 1.5 cm silver embroidery edged with silver/gold cord.

    Lanyard: Respective Service colors.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    8. Assistant Superintendent

    Shoulder badge: A lion badge surrounded by a laurel wreath.

    Cap Peak – Plain.

    Lanyard: Respective Service colors.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    When wearing a ceremonial dress, a silver/gold collar badge (collar dog) which is a lion with a scroll below inscribed the respective Service names (Administration Police/Kenya Police) worn on a black/maroon background.

    9. Chief Inspector

    Shoulder badge: Three military pattern stars.

    Cap Peak – Plain.

    Lanyard: Corded navy blue/maroon/khaki.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    When wearing a ceremonial dress, a silver/gold collar badge (collar dog) which is a lion with a scroll below inscribed the respective Service names (Administration Police/Kenya Police) worn on a black/maroon background.

    10. Inspector 

    Shoulder Badge: Two military pattern stars.

    Cap Peak – Plain.

    Lanyard: Corded navy blue/maroon/khaki.

    The name of the respective service is inscribed at the base of the cloth badge.

    When wearing a ceremonial dress, a silver/gold collar badge (collar dog) which is a lion with a scroll below inscribed the respective Service names (Administration Police/Kenya Police) worn on a black/maroon background.

    11.Senior Sergeant

    Badge: Three bars worsted red chevrons with the Kenya Coat of Arms in National colors embroidered on a dark blue cloth above the chevrons mounted on a dark blue/maroon Melton cloth extending 1 cm larger than the badge..

    Cap Peak – Plain.

    Lanyard: Navy blue/maroon/khaki plain.

    There shall be no inscription of the respective Service names on the badges.

    NOTE: For an NCO in possession of ‘Operation Area’ kit, when wearing Khaki Angola shirts, will wear chevrons made of white material.

    12. Sergeant

    Badge: Three bars worsted red chevrons mounted on a dark blue/maroon Melton cloth extending 1 cm larger than the badge.

    Cap Peak – Plain.

    Lanyard: Navy blue/maroon/khaki plain.

    There shall be no inscription of the respective Service names on the badges.

    13. CORPORAL

    Badge: Two bars worsted red chevrons mounted on a dark blue/maroon Melton cloth extending 1 cm larger than the badge.

    Cap Peak – Plain.

    Lanyard: Navy blue/maroon/khaki plain.

    There shall be no inscription of the respective Service names on the badges.