Chiefs will have at least five police officers assigned to them and be required to keep work plans and a register of services as the Government mulls empowering and professionalizing grassroots administrators.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki said the considerations that will come to effect by early next year are intended to make the 3,950 chiefs and their 9,043 assistants more effective but also more accountable to the public.
“We are working towards reorganising ourselves between the National Government Administration Officers (NGAOs) and the police to ensure, as it was before, that every chief has police officers attached to them to enable them to be able to enforce law and order,” he said.
The CS, who was speaking at the Mtwapa chief’s office in Kilifi after paying an impromptu visit, directed the State Department of Interior to liaise with the National Police Service to implement the proposal by January.
He allayed concerns that placing police under chiefs’ command could return the country to the era of all-powerful and notorious provincial administrators, saying the government will strike a fine balance between power and responsibilities.
“We are going to improve their working environment to make sure they deliver security and are able to articulate government policy more clearly and more effectively by supporting them as they deliver their services. We are going to stand with them and work with them to ensure that we deliver security.”
The officers will also be required to prominently display the service charter outside their offices as part of the reforms the CS said will be progressively escalated to the senior levels of NGAO, including district and county commissioners.
The service charter, work plans and register of service will be standardised and made mandatory.
The CS said this was also intended to inject competence and discourage the administrators from dabbling in partisan politics.
The funds to build modern offices will be sourced from public coffers including the Constituency Development Fund.
“We want to ensure our NGAOs have the right environment to attend to citizens because they are the government’s eyes on the ground,” the CS said.
On security in the coast region, the CS revealed that the government was working closely with community policing groups to identify and isolate criminal gangs and networks behind drugs and violence.
He said the government was working on a smart vehicle and traffic monitoring policy in Mombasa and other parts of the country that will reduce the number of roadblocks.