Nairobi — David Kimaiyo is poised to become Kenya's first Inspector General of Police after his name was approved by the Parliamentary Committee on Security.
The committee led by Mount Elgon MP Fred Kapondi vetted Kimaiyo earlier on Wednesday and accepted his nomination.
Kapondi later tabled Kimaiyo's name in Parliament expressing optimism that he will be approved for appointment during debate on Thursday.
"Having considered the suitability of the nominee, and pursuant to Article 252(2) of the Constitution and section 12 (7)(a) of the National Police Service Act, 2011, the committee recommends that Parliament approves the nomination and subsequent appointment of Mr David Kimaiyo to the post of Inspector-General of the National Police Service," the report by read Kapondi's committee indicated.
The chairman of the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA) Macharia Njeru who made a presentation to the committee said that his team was satisfied that Kimaiyo was the best man for the job.
"We are satisfied beyond any shadow of doubt that he is the right man. He has a strong operational experience, he has served very well in the service and understands the police service well," the IPOA chairman said in endorsing Kimaiyo.
Njeru however expressed strong opposition to names presented for two deputies saying that the President and Prime Minister failed to adhere to the National Police Service Act on the gender requirement.
"As regards the Deputy Inspectors General, IPOA notes that names have not been formally presented. The authority's expectation is that express provisions of Section 14 of the National Police Service Act will be adhered to regarding the gender equation," Njeru added.
President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga have nominated CID director Ndegwa Muhoro and acting AP commandant Samuel Arachi for the two positions of deputy inspectors general although their names have not been gazetted.
During his vetting, Kimaiyo told the security committee that he will come up with a comprehensive strategic plan to transform the police force. He said the police service must change in the way it operates.
Kimaiyo who was Director of Operations at Police Headquarters during the 2008 post- election violence said that he will ensure that police are not overwhelmed as they were during the last polls.
"We have already identified the hot spots in the country. We know where there is easy availability of small arms and those are areas to post officers to address the problem," he stressed.
IPOA's concern on gender has also been shared by the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution (CIC) and the Federation of Women Lawers - FIDA.
FIDA on Wednesday claimed that there was a plot by Parliament to amend gender provisions of the National Police Service Act to lock out women from the top three appointments of the Police Service.
FIDA chairperson Ruth Odhiambo argued that MPs were plotting to sneak in changes to ensure that Kimaiyo, Muhoro and Arachi got appointed without having to abide by the one-third gender rule.
Section 14 (b) of the National Police Service Commission Act provides that: "In the entire recruitment and appointment process of the Inspector-General or Deputy Inspector-General, the Commission, Parliament and President, as the case may be, shall ensure that at all times one of the three positions of the Inspector-General and the two Deputy Inspector-Generals is of opposite gender."
CIC on its part wanted the appointment of the Inspector General of police and two deputies halted until the one-third gender rule is met.
CIC chairman Charles Nyachae insisted that the President and Prime Minister went against the provisions of the constitution and the National Police Service Commission Act after only nominating men for appointment.
Nyachae says that the National Police Service Commission (NPSC) shortlisted qualified women for the positions and there is no reason for failing to pick one from the list.
"The failure to observe this mandatory provision not only breaches the law and the spirit of the constitution but is a further assault on the gender gains which have been consolidated in the Constitution of Kenya 2010," he added.