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Kenya police bosses deny theft claims

NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 4 – The police department has denied claims that it had lost Sh800 million from the theft of HIV drugs and faulty CCTV cameras installed at Vigilance House.

Police spokesman Erick Kiraithe said on Friday that there was only one case of theft in April where drugs estimated to cost Sh15,000 were removed from his office but disciplinary measures had already taken place.

He further stated that CCTV cameras were installed at a cost of a little over Sh3 million and termed media reports that it cost Sh300 million as false.

“Sh3 million and Sh300 million have got no relationship at all. When you imagine that the CCTV system has been working for close to four years, when you compare that and allegations that it works for two weeks and is a dummy, then I think that there is something wrong somewhere,” the police spokesman said.

He called on Kenyans to have more faith in the police force, saying they were transparent.

“When any government department or any other institution takes measures to ensure that there is accountability within itself, this department should be congratulated, not condemned,” Mr Kiraithe said.

“The procurement followed the government procedures to the letter and the payment was after the system was tested by the independent experts and found to be functioning well.”

The police spokesman stated that it was not the policy of the department to discuss secure communication equipment in the public.

He said that the commissioner had reviewed a recent procurement of advanced secure communication equipment for the police and found that the procurement procedure was properly followed, the equipment delivered and the government got competitive market value for the money.

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According to the police spokesman, in June 2008, the Directorate of Personnel had requisitioned for Human Resources Management System and Database Management system software.

Subsequently, the systems were tendered for and the Ministerial Tender Committee at the ministry of Provincial Administration and Internal Security awarded the tender on April 2, this year.

However, the Commissioner of Police cancelled the tender on grounds that it did not conform to the requisition. The asking price was also found to be exorbitant.

Subsequently, the Police Commissioner ordered for investigations into the matter after which the findings were presented to him.

Mr Kiraithe said that following the investigations, some civilian and uniformed police officers named in the report were in the process of being interdicted.

According to the East African Bribery Index published by Transparency International-Kenya, the Kenya Police is the most corrupt institution in East Africa.

The survey conducted between April 16 and May 15 this year, indicates that Kenya has the highest incidence of corruption at 45 percent while the level of corruption in Uganda is 34 percent. According to the index, Tanzania is the least corrupt country in East Africa with a corruption incidence of 17.8 percent.
The Police force in the three East African countries top their respective aggregate indices.

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