NTV news anchor and show host Larry Madowo has laid bare an incident, which is apparently a prevailing trend, where police officers have been cashing in on Kenyans they apprehend for not carrying their national Identification Card, regardless of the circumstance.
Madowo shared an account of a victim of this money making-making scheme, who was arrested and had to purchase his freedom despite later proving his identity.
“I was arrested because I didn’t have an ID when i was seeing my friend off to his native for Easter. But since I live around I called my neighbour to bring my ID both national and school ID. When I got the documents they didn’t want them anymore. 'ID ni ya baba yako!’ is what he just said.” the man cites as posted by Madowo.
What irked the victim (name withheld) most, was not being arrested but the manner in which the apprehension was conducted.
“I call this business. It’s not illegal to do random or routine security checks. But what’s the worth if at the station no one will want to know what happened just give money and you are out safely? It’s the Kenya we are in. I don’t know if its true or are we cursed!!!” he lamented.
The complainant disclosed that he was released from Kamukunji Police Station after parting with Sh500, adding that others who got their names booked in the Occurence Book (OB) had to cough out Sh3,000 to be freed.
City Lawyer Donald B Korir dismissed this common habit among police officers in the Capital stating that there was no offence called "Not carrying ID".
"I never carry my ID and I will never be arrested. There is no offence called " Not Carrying ID" Next time, call me when Police stop you". Korir affirmed.
Some members of the public who have in the past been arrested for not carrying their ID, have in the end been wrongfully accused of minor offences such as being drunk and disorderly among others.
A recent report by the Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission (EACC) ranked the police department as the most corrupt government institution.
Read Also: EACC Reveals Top 8 Most Corrupt Ministries
However, Cabinet Secretary for Interior Joseph Nkaissery, later on defended the police stating that police would not be corrupt if the public was not bribing them, adding that the the citizenry was to be blamed for the vice.
“I can also say without any fear of contradiction that it is the society which is corrupt because there is no time a policeman can come to your pocket and remove money from you so it is actually you who is corrupting the police. So it is the society which is doing this and it is wrong. I want to ask the public not to compromise the police otherwise we will deal with you,” Nkaissery asserted.
Read Also: Nkaissery Defends Corrupt Police