NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 20 – The National Police Service Commission is investigating a senior police officer who was recruited into the force 22 years ago, using another person’s primary school certificate.
National Police Service Commission chairman Johnstone Kavuludi says the officer – who used a certificate bearing the name Nelson Omwenga Nyakundi – has been asked to proceed on leave until the matter is determined.
The officer’s documents show he was in Standard 8 when he was 10 years old.
‘Nyakundi’ rose through the ranks to become a Superintendent of Police and had been cleared during an assessment of his suitability and competence.
“At the time of vetting, the allegation of impersonation had not been brought to the attention of the commission,” Kavuludi explained.
He says the commission carried extensive investigations which even took them to the village of the man whose certificate was used by the officer.
“Some officers in the National Police Service and the public, being privy to information that the commission did not have at that time, informed us,” he said.
“He had used the certificate to facilitate his recruitment in the police service.”
The commission acted on information provided by his counterparts and members of the public.
His relatives and people from his village knew him “by a different name. His chief was surprised.”
According to Kavuludi, the real Nelson Omwenga Nyakundi was astonished “that there is another person using a name that resembles his.”
“Nelson Omwenga Nyakundi is alive and doing something else.”
Following the case, Kavuludi cautioned that no police officer will be spared even after passing the vetting exercise if it’s found he provided wrong information or committed an offence that warrants removal from the force.
His file has since been forwarded to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations while the commission has formed a committee in line with the regulations on discipline to conduct a hearing and recommend appropriate action.
“The commission would like to reiterate that passing the vetting does not preclude the commission from taking action against officers where it is established that certain crucial information was not available to the commission at the time of making the determination,” he cautioned.