, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 18 – The Kenya Police has commenced a project to refurbish 14 stations across the country with modern facilities, including proper housing for officers and their families.
The move is part of recommendations contained in the Justice [Rtd] Philip Ransley report on police reforms which is being implemented by a team headed by Kenya Airways Chief Executive Officer Titus Naikuni.
The stations to get a facelift include Ugunja and Sigomere police stations in Siaya County and Ndhiwa police station in Homabay.
Modern administration blocks will be put up in the three stations in Trans Nzoia County. The government is also seeking to construct flats at Kainuk police station in Turkana.
Commissioner of Police Mathew Iteere has already placed an advertisement seeking contractors to undertake the work which will cost billions of shillings.
He did not state the amount to be spent in the massive development project but officials at Vigilance House have indicated the funds are budgeted for under a Sh62 billion kitty for police reforms outlined in the strategic plan ending next year.
Other regions to benefit from the development exercise include Baringo County where a proposed Administration block and flats will be constructed at Chemligot police station.
Similar units will also be put up at Laisamis police station.
Other stations set to be improved include Gitaki police station in Meru and Meru police station.
Iteere is also seeking contractors to put up office blocks and houses for police officers at Karatina police station in Nyeri County, Kagaa police station in Nyandarua and Hola police station in Tana River County.
Mbalambala police station in Garissa county, Wajir North police station in Wajir County will also have residential houses and an administration block constructed.
Police Spokesman Eric Kiraithe told Capital News that the move is aimed at improving service delivery to Kenyans besides uplifting the living standards of police officers.
“This is part of the government’s commitment to equip our police stations while at the same time improving the living conditions of our officers,” Kiraithe said.
The Ransley commission, set up by President Kibaki during his first term in office recommended a raft of measures to be taken to improve working and living conditions of police officers.
Last year, the Naikuni-led implementation team unveiled an ambitious strategic programme running up to next year which will require Sh78 billion to effect.
The team said it intends to spend a bulk of the money – Sh62 billion – to purchase motor vehicles, communication equipment as well as build modern houses to improve the poor living conditions of police officers across the country.
Internal Security Minister Professor George Saitoti said more than half of the money will be financed by the government and the deficit sourced from development partners.
“The money will be spent on among other things to complete stalled police housing projects, construct new houses, undertake repair and maintenance of existing police houses, develop a new housing policy for the national police services to allow the police to live with the public as opposed to living in police lines,” the minister announced when he launched the strategic plan.
Police officers in most stations across the country, including the capital Nairobi are forced to share small houses with colleagues and families, in what has been blamed for increased stress levels on many of them.