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Boinett fires first shot with directive to rid police of graft

New police boss Joseph Boinett on Thursday directed his commanders to fight corruption in the service.

“I will be keeping a sharp eye on corruption, especially in the police service. Corruption must come to an end,” he said.

He also pledged to work closely with the military and National Intelligence Service to fight terrorism.

Mr Boinett, who was officially taking over from acting Inspector-General Samwel Arachi, said policing, which had for a long time been state-centred, would now focus on the citizens. “When Kenyans are safe and secure, the State is also secure,” he said.

He warned that terrorist threats were real but said robust measures to counter them were being put in place.

“We will collaborate with all security agencies. However, there are two or three issues that we have to work on,” he said without explaining further.

Mr Boinett said the police service would revisit its approach to the war on terror.

SUSPICION AND MISUNDERSTANDING

“I do not come to this office a stranger. I was enlisted 31 years ago. I have worked in the police, NIS and diplomatic missions and I believe this will make my work easier,” he said.

Admitting the relationship between the police and NIS was characterised by suspicion and misunderstanding, the police boss said his priority would be to bridge the gap.

He assured the public that they would be allowed to picket and hold peaceful demonstrations, but within the law.

“However, those who will block roads or damage property would be dealt with firmly,” he warned.

He also told the officers to operate within the law and assured them of his support.

“I will not allow my officers to be harassed or put to shame while executing their duties lawfully. I will defend you however those who violate the laws would be dealt with firmly,” he said.

He added other main priorities would be dealing with cattle rustling, banditry and criminal gangs.

“I have directed the various commanders to deal once and for all with these criminal gangs. Wherever they are, we will not allow them to rear their ugly heads,” he said.