, NAIROBI, Kenya, January 19 – Three new top police chiefs were on Friday sworn-in, opening a new leadership chapter at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), Kenya Police and the Administration Police (AP) following changes announced two weeks ago by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
George Maingi Kinoti was sworn in as the DCI boss, Edward Mbugua as the Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of the Kenya Police and Noor Gabow for the Administration Police.
The swearing in was presided over by the Chief Registrar of the Judiciary Anne Amadi, in the presence of Chief Justice David Maraga—a day after they underwent a rigorous vetting exercise by the National Police Service Commission (NPSC) which is chaired by Johnstone Kavuludi who later forwarded their names to the president for formal appointment.
In their oath of office, they all pledged to uphold the constitution while diligently discharging their mandate.
They all did not address journalists after the taking oath at the Judiciary headquarters.
“I welcome the new Deputy Inspector General’s of Police and the DCI to this very onerous responsibility of providing public safety and public security to the people of this country,” said Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet, who witnessed the brief swearing in ceremony attended by other top government officials and the new officers’ families.
He was quick to add that he is “confident of their ability”.
Kinoti replaces Ndegwa Muhoro who had served as DCI boss for 8 years, while Gabow replaces Samuel Arachi. Gabow takes over from Joel Kitili. All are yet to be re-deployed by the Public Service Commission (PSC).
“It is a great responsibility and I have no doubt in my mind that you are fit and equal to the task as attested they way you were putting yourself during the interviews,” the IG said.
Chief Justice Maraga reminded them of the task ahead and expectations from Kenyans for them to deliver.
“You have a big challenge ahead of you. But you are seasoned police officers…Kenyans need firm assurance that they can go about their businesses in a safe and a secure environment and their property will be protected from any bad element. This is what that defines a good country,” the CJ asserted, and assured them of the judiciary’s support in executing their mandate.
“The DIG’s, we must put to an end a number of nightmares that Kenyans face particularly the carnage on our roads. The accidents toll is just too high, we need to do something about that. Let us enforce the traffic regulations so that we do not have Kenyans being killed on the roads needlessly,” he said, and reminded them on the need to uphold the constitution at all times.
And barely an hour after the swearing in, Kenyans on social media were listing what they want the new police chiefs to do.
But Kinoti’s appointment seems to have excited many in the security sector and Kenyans who took to social media to laud him, recalling his past track record.
“Thank you Uhuru Kenyatta. The best man for the job actually. Bwana Kinoti is the best man for the job,” wrote Moibi Mironga on Twitter.
And from multiple interviews with senior and junior police officers, since Kinoti was appointed, it is apparent that most are comfortable with him at the top.
“We have no doubt he will transform that department because he is a professional who understands it well,” one County CID Commander said.
Prior to his appointment, Kinoti was the National Police Spokesman and sat at Jogoo House where he often consulted and advised the Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet on public communication and policy.
He has previously served as the head of security at the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), Head of Complains at Police Headquarters during former Police Commissioner Hussein Ali’s tenure among other postings.
He sharpened his management skills when he was Personal Assistant to Joseph Kamau, the former CID director who is credited with transforming the department and gave Kinoti various assignments that involved tracking down hard-core criminals and dismantling their networks—particularly in Ngong area where they had given locals sleepless nights with carjackings and burglaries often leading to killings of their victims.