What you need to know:
- In the documents she filed in court through her lawyer, Mr David Oduor, Ms Kaindi claimed that a deputy inspector-general cannot be fired without following due process.
- She accused the government’s legal adviser, Attorney-General Githu Muigai, and the National Police Service Commission of violating the Constitution and the law on the National Police Service.
- On September 4, the labour court declined to suspend the presidential directive transferring Ms Kaindi after an applicant moved to court to sue the government over the matter.
Former Deputy Inspector General of Police Grace Kaindi on Tuesday filed a legal challenge to overturn her removal by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Ms Kaindi went to court claiming that her removal from the police service and subsequent appointment as ambassador meant the government had ignored the law.
In the documents she filed in court through her lawyer, Mr David Oduor, Ms Kaindi claimed that a deputy inspector-general cannot be fired without following due process.
She accused the government’s legal advisor, Attorney-General Githu Muigai, and the National Police Service Commission of violating the Constitution and the law on the National Police Service.
She listed the two as respondents in the case.
“This honourable court has the duty to defend and protect the Constitution of Kenya, which is being violated by the Executive arm of Government,” Ms Kaindi said in court papers. “In effecting the transfer, the President is seizing the powers of National Police Service Commission.”
She also said that the decision to remove her was never put in writing and, therefore, the directive to sack her was an “illegal roadside declaration”.
She accused President Uhuru Kenyatta of violating the commission’s powers and challenged the fact that her replacement did not consider the two-thirds gender rule required by the Constitution.
Mr Joel Kitili, who replaced her in an acting capacity, was the head of the General Service Unit.
Ms Kaindi alleged that her office is a constitutional one and that she was appointed through a competitive process by the National Police Service. She insisted that her five-year contract ends in 2018 and hence the purported transfer violates her terms of employment.
“The transfer erodes constitutional gains towards women’s empowerment and no prejudice would be suffered by the sued parties if the requests made in the suit are allowed,” her lawyer said.
Ms Kaindi was vetted and approved by Parliament before the President appointed her deputy inspector-general of police in 2013.
Through a June 15 letter, the police service commission had acknowledged that she had a five-year contract and was not supposed to be removed from office. However, she was replaced on Tuesday last week and appointed ambassador.
She argued that there is no provision in law for a deputy inspector-general to be in office in an acting capacity and hence her alleged removal was null and void.
“My alleged removal from office and the manner in which I was ejected offends the very Constitution which was used to appoint me and to govern this country. The President did violate the Constitution which he swore to uphold and protect,” she said.
She asked the court to certify the case as urgent. She also said that the police service commission should be stopped from replacing her and declaring any vacancy in the position of the police deputy inspector-general. She further asked that the directive by President Kenyatta to transfer her from the Police Service to the Public Service be suspended.
However, High Court judge Joseph Onguto declined to issue any orders, only directing that the case documents be given to the police service commission and the Attorney-General and that further directives be issued on September 16.
On September 4, the labour court declined to suspend the presidential directive transferring Ms Kaindi after an applicant sued the government over the matter. Justice Monica Mbaru said at the time that the decision to replace Ms Kaindi had already been made.
The judge said she would determine the case in seven days since the police service commission and the Attorney-General had opposed an earlier application by the applicant, Mr Zachary Onsongo.
The National Police Service Commission and the Attorney-General had told the court that Mr Onsongo was not a trade union representative nor did he have an employment contract with the commission and, therefore, had no powers to act for Ms Kaindi.
They claimed that Ms Kaindi herself was not a party to the suit and that Mr Onsongo had not attached a copy indicating the President’s decision that he was challenging.
The case will be heard on Monday.