Azimio la Umoja leader Martha Karua Friday accused Inspector General of police Japhet Koome of working under the political influence following the scaling down of former president Uhuru Kenyatta’s security.
Karua said it is unfortunate to see successive holders of IG continue to bow to executive pressure despite their constitutional safeguards.
“Police independence from political influence in decision making and in operation is what informed the police reforms in the 2010 constitution,” Karua wrote on her official Twitter account.
“The independence of the holder of the office shapes the trajectory of the office constitutional safe guards notwithstanding.”
Koome confirmed Friday that the security of the former fourth president of Kenya was scaled down.
He said the changes were part of a restructuring process within the National Police Service (NPS).
The IG added that he recalled the officer in charge of the former president to comply with the regulations of the National Police Service.
“Once the president has retired, the commander is a superintendent of police.
“An officer who was of the rank of an assistant Inspector General was with the retired president. So how do you expect an assistant Inspector General to report to another assistant Inspector General,” he said.
Koome defended the move noting that it was in good faith and not a result of a political witch-hunt.
He said several former government officials had had their security scaled down.
He said the changes were aimed at rationalizing security deployment in the country to ensure the fair distribution of security personnel.
The Presidential Retirement Benefits Act 2013 says the former president is entitled to at least six bodyguards and security in both urban and rural homes on a need basis as determined by the ministry of interior from time to time.
However, the same law allows the state to deprive him of the benefits if Parliament passes a resolution.
This can happen if the retired president gets another government job, earns a salary, is jailed for over three years, or actively participates in running politics.