Police service commission headed for fresh nominations

NAIROBI, Kenya, May 15 – The Parliamentary Committee on National Security has rejected President Mwai Kibaki’s nomination of Amina Masoud to head the National Police Service Commission, and has instead proposed its own nominees.

In their report which was tabled in the House on Tuesday, the committee chaired by Mt Elgon MP Fred Kapondi proposed three new persons for the president’s consideration.

The committee said Masoud, a former teacher in Lamu and a public relations practitioner was not an appropriate candidate as she lacked the requisite legal expertise.

The committee now wants MPs support its choice of a one-time FIDA Executive Director Jean Njeri Kamau, former Interim Independent Boundaries Review Commission commissioner Murshid Mohamed and Johnston Kavuludi who were found to have a sound legal background given that the mandate of the commission has a quasi-judicial function.

The parliamentary team has also recommended the nomination of Esther Chui-Colombini, Ronald Musengi, James Atemi, Muia Mutia and Mary Auma Owuor to serve as commissioners.

In the report the committee explains that it had resolved to conduct an inquiry on the 10 short listed candidates for the post of chairperson in order to establish whether there was credibility and objectivity in the selection process.

The nomination of the team was shrouded in controversy after Prime Minister Raila Odinga disowned the list claiming he was not consulted while civil society groups challenged the matter claiming none of the nominees was qualified to be appointed as Judge of the High Court as outlined in the Constitution.

Kamau, a Former FIDA Executive Director and Former CEO in the Ombudsman Office, had been dropped from the list of short listed candidates in unclear circumstances.

In February, a member of the panel that interviewed candidates for the National Police Service Commission opposed the shortlisted candidates for the post of chairperson, claiming that the process was flawed.

Lydia Gachoya, a commissioner at the National Gender and Equality Commission differed with the unilateral decision reached by members of the selection panel to strike off the name of Kamau whom she argues was ranked second.

Gachoya claimed that Kamau’s name was removed to give undue advantage to Mohamed for the post.

LABAN WANAMBISI

Laban Wanambisi is a Parliamentary and Political reporter. He joined the Capital Newsteam in 2005. Since then, he has reported on many of the major news events over the years including his first major assignment covering the 2005 National Referendum on the Draft Constitution, and several other subsequent key national and international events.