Why Lenku and Kimaiyo had to leave office

Tuesday December 2 2014

Mr David Kimaiyo (left) and Mr Joseph ole Lenku

Mr David Kimaiyo (left) and Mr Joseph ole Lenku during an earlier function. Sources said Mr Lenku, Mr Kimaiyo, Gen Karangi and Maj-Gen Kamweru were given opportunities to explain their achievements in preventing the attacks, where they had failed and reasons for the failure. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By BERNARD NAMUNANE
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President Kenyatta convened three crucial meetings last week during which it became apparent that Interior Cabinet Secretary Mr Joseph Ole Lenku and police chief David Kimaiyo could no longer remain in office, it has emerged.

The President has lately come under immense pressure over the failure by his security organs to tame banditry and terrorist attacks that have rocked the country.

On Wednesday morning, President Kenyatta convened a meeting of the National Security Council (NSC) to discuss the reasons why security agencies had failed to detect and pre-empt the attacks, top government sources said Tuesday.

It is understood that the President and his deputy, Mr William Ruto, were furious that despite the government investing billions in equipping the police and increasing their numbers, cases of fatal attacks on Kenyans were on the increase.

FAILED TO COLLABORATE
Others who attended this meeting were outgoing Interior CS Mr Lenku, the just retired Inspector-General of Police, Mr Kimaiyo, Chief of Kenya Defence Forces Gen Julius Karangi, Interior Affairs Principal Secretary Monica Juma, Deputy Inspector-Generals of Police Grace Kaindi and Samwel Arachi, National Intelligence Services director Philip Kamweru and CID director Ndegwa Muhoro.

Sources said Mr Lenku, Mr Kimaiyo, Gen Karangi and Maj-Gen Kamweru were given opportunities to explain their achievements in preventing the attacks, where they had failed and reasons for the failure.

The four were also required to give suggestions on how they planned to improve so as to tame the killings, either by bandits or terrorists.

Apart from the challenges brought about by the Constitution, sources close to the meetings told the Nation that it became clear Mr Lenku and Mr Kimaiyo had also failed to collaborate in fighting crime.

IMPROVE PERFORMANCE
“Questions were raised regarding their abilities to lead the dockets they held,” sources said.

On Thursday at 6.30am, President Kenyatta and his deputy held another meeting at State House with Mr Lenku and Mr Kimaiyo where the two were asked to give suggestions on how they planned to improve their performances.

They were also asked if they would opt to quit their positions in the face of the difficulties they faced.

At the end of this meeting, it became clear to the President and his deputy that the two men tasked with the duty of keeping Kenyans safe and secure were not up to the task. It is understood the Jubilee leadership was convinced that Mr Lenku and Mr Kimaiyo had to go.

Around noon, President Kenyatta and his deputy held a Cabinet meeting where among other issues, the matter of insecurity and killing of Kenyans was broadly discussed. Even a brief from the Presidential Strategic Communications Unit never touched on insecurity.

This was after it was agreed that the security organs engage teams of the Senate and the National Assembly to amend any laws that make it difficult for them to be effective in their work.

In his speech Tuesday, President Kenyatta confirmed: “In light of this, I directed my Government’s security actors to engage with the members of the relevant committees of the legislature last week with a view to rectify administrative and legal hurdles that limit our ability to deal with the very real and existential threat that we face.”

Tuesday’s killing of 36 quarry workers in Mandera prompted immediate action from the President who chaired a special Cabinet meeting in the morning and which explains the sudden resignation of Mr Kimaiyo and the replacement of Mr Lenku with Kajiado Central MP Maj-Gen (Rtd) Joseph Nkaissery.