SRC increases police salaries by 1K, bosses to get 11K

Lower cadre police officers will receive an additional Sh1,000 in pay this month, whilst their superiors would receive up to Sh11,000 in compensation.

An entry-level constable will receive Sh21,645, up from Sh20,390 last month, in accordance with the increased salary suggested by the salary and Remuneration Commission (SRC), while their more experienced coworkers in the same rank would receive Sh40,354, up from Sh38,975 last month.

A superintendent of police’s salary will increase from Sh98,380 to Sh103,929 this month, earning him an additional Sh5,549.

An assistant inspector-general will also leave with Sh209,079, an increase of Sh11,249 from the Sh197,830 received the month before.

Eliud Kinuthia, head of the National Police Service Commission (NPSC), read out a circular yesterday that included the contentious new pay and gave it to Inspector-General of Police Japhet Koome.

In order to protect civil servants from the consequences of the rising cost of living, the automatic four-year review of their pay and benefits by the SRC includes the rise.

“Out of the Sh27.1 billion allocated to all civil servants, police officers got a share of Sh3.6 billion, with the rest going to other civil servants. This is the best we could get to be implemented in two phases; the first phase of Sh2.284 billion will be implemented in the current financial year and the second phase allocation of Sh1.317 billion will be implemented in the 2024/2025 financial year,” said Mr Kinuthia.

The review will affect all over 12,000 uniformed and non-uniformed officers in pay group one (constables) to pay group 12 (senior assistant inspector-general of police). The two deputy inspectors-general of police and the IG are classified as State officers.

Mr Kinuthia said the pay rise was part of the government’s pledge to improve the welfare of police officers and did not reflect the expected recommendations of the Police and Prisons Reform Task Force chaired by former Chief Justice David Maraga.

But the new salaries were controversial among commission members before a consensus was struck and are likely to draw criticism because of the glaring differences in the increments.

“Many times we disagreed, many times we could not reach consensus, but we could not disagree forever. At this point we said we can communicate what we have agreed and what is still under discussion can continue so that we do not leave our officers waiting,” said Mr Kinuthia.

IG Koome said the new salaries will be reflected on Friday when officers receive their August pay.

“I would like to emphasise that policing is a vocation and it is different from other professions because you have to be on call 24 hours a day. I don’t know how much you need to reward that kind of public servant…We had several meetings as NPSC and SRC to negotiate this review and it took a while. It has not been a very pleasant journey, but we had to come to an agreement. By the end of the week our officers will have their salaries in the bank,” the IG said.

The two officers, who both serve as NPSC commissioners, said they were now working in harmony after disagreeing over the promotion of over 500 police officers to various positions in June.

On the state of security in the country, Mr Koome said that, despite isolated inter-ethnic conflicts along the Nyanza-Rift Valley border, inter-clan conflicts in Garissa and criminal activities in Lamu, the country was safe.

“At times when we take decisive action, we are told that we have overreacted and used excessive force, but how do you expect us to deal with someone who burns his neighbour’s house and church? If I use maximum force against such a person, you should understand the situation we are in because we will not allow this to continue,” the IG said.

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