Vetting team approves Japhet Koome as Police IG

Japhet Koome

The Inspector-General of Police nominee Japhet Koome before the Committee of the National Assembly on Administration and Internal Security and the Senate Committee on Defence and Foreign Relations on November 8, 2022.

Photo credit: Dennis Onsongo | Nation Media Group

A joint parliamentary committee vetting Japhet Koome on Wednesday approved his nomination as the next Police Inspector-General, moving him closer to becoming the fourth boss of the National Police Service.

The Senate adopted a report by the committee recommending his appointment into the position with legislators debating his approval after. 

Mr Koome was vetted on Tuesday by the committee on National Security, Defence and Foreign Relations of the Senate and the departmental committee on Administration and Internal Affairs of the National Assembly.

The vacancy arose in the office on September 27, 2022 after Hillary Mutyambai resigned from office when President William Ruto ascended to power.

Dr Ruto then forwarded the name of Mr Koome, a former Nairobi County Police Commander, for vetting by Parliament after his nomination on September 29. He is currently the Commandant of the National Police Service College, Kiganjo.

Overwhelmingly approved

The senators on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved the nomination of Mr Koome for the key job. The committee's report, tabled by Baringo Senator William Cheptumo, found Mr Koome qualified for appointment as IG, saying he possesses necessary experience and qualifications to hold the office. 

The committee said the nominee exhibited knowledge in matters relating to security, law, management, leadership skills and qualities necessary to administer, manage and command the NPS.

Further, they said, he met all the constitutional requirements of Chapter 6 on leadership and integrity, as well as those provided for under Section 7(b) of the Public Appointments (Parliamentary Approval) Act.

While supporting the motion, Uasin Gishu Senator Jackson Mandago challenged Mr Koome, should his name also sail through at the National Assembly, to move with speed and help reduce increasing cases of insecurity in the country.

“The exercise of the recruitment of police has been marred with a lot of bribery. I hope the new IG will ensure that the recruitment is free and fair and is equitably distributed across the country,” said Mr Mandago.

Mombasa Senator Mohamed Faki added that in Mr Koome, Kenya will get an experienced police boss who will ensure Kenya is safe and secure.

“We expect him to solve rising cases of insecurity,” he said.

Nyamira Senator Okong’o Omogeni called on Mr Koome to, once sworn in, help reduce the number of roadblocks on Kenyan roads, terming them conduits of corruption by police officers. 

“I am told now that once the police stop you, you have to pay Sh1,000. I hope he will instill some discipline and professionalism in the police service. We need service to all and not oppressors for all,” said Mr Omogeni.