Kenyans are Unfair to the Police - CS Matiang'i

  • Dr. Fred Matiangi, Minister of Internal Security
    A file image of Interior CS Dr. Fred Matiangi.
  • Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang'i has defended the Kenya Police Service over blanket accusations and negative publicity which has resulted in an unfavorable attitude towards the security force.

    Speaking during an interview with the Standard on Thursday, December 31, Matiang'i noted that one action of a police officer often leads to the whole police force being castigated.

    "I think people are unfair to the police. Ninety-nine percent of our police officers are fantastic.

    A file photo of Interior CS Fred Matiang'i
    A file photo of Interior CS Fred Matiang'i

    "We have one of the most disciplined police forces on the continent yet people think they are the worst people because of one police officer. It does not work like that," Matiangi noted.

    According to the Interior CS, the police ought to be treated the same way as professionals in other industries. 

    "All those professionals can make mistakes but do we wake up in the morning and condemn them? What I am asking for is fairness, sincerity and balance in the things we do and say.

    "I honestly think that the issue is overplayed and exaggerated and in some cases the blame is unfair," he stated.

    Speaking on accusations of police officers using excessive force against civilians, he admitted that some police officers have occasionally crossed the line when dispensing justice.

    He however condemned their actions alluding that the interior ministry is working towards better engagement and relations with the public.

    Other challenges that faced the security sector, according to Matiang'i, revolve around poor recruitment policy and not holding officers accountable for their actions.

    "Some of the challenges we have had is because we promoted people who did not have special skills or capabilities to guide and teach others or even basic skills in managing people," he stated.

    Recruitment of cadet police officers was key in mitigating the leadership gap in the security sector, according to Matiang'i. 

    Furthermore, he noted that during the Covid-19 lockdown, 16 police officers have been found guilty of gross misconduct.

    Police officers during a parade
    Police officers during a parade