Inspector-General of Police Japhet Koome has had to clarify that former President Uhuru Kenyatta’s security detail has not been withdrawn.
He has explained that he only acted in good faith to streamline the arrangement and that the move was not politically motivated.
The security team was headed by an assistant inspector-general but should, according to the police service structure, be led by a superintendent.
While, to IG Koome, this is a normal reorganisation, the former President’s allies are accusing the new leadership of “crossing the line” in the treatment of Mr Kenyatta. This is bad public relations for President William Ruto’s administration.
The security of a former Head of State is no joking matter. This could set a bad precedent if it is perceived that Mr Kenyatta is being frustrated and humiliated over political differences.
If anything untoward happened to him, it would have dire consequences. What a retired leader is entitled to is entrenched in the law and he does not need any favours. It should not be a matter of settling political scores if any.
The Presidential Retirement Benefits Act outlines the security team for the retired leader and his residences.
Secondly, some Kenya Kwanza Alliance politicians have accused the Kenyatta and Moi families of not paying taxes on their vast estates.
Of course, every eligible Kenyan must pay tax to enable the country to meet its heavy financial needs, but this should never be politicised. The tax authorities know what to do, which is to make verifiable demands.
The bad blood between President Ruto and his former boss is nothing new. In the last year’s elections, Mr Kenyatta threw his weight behind President Ruto’s opponent, Azimio flag bearer Raila Odinga, whom he has continued to support.
This is getting messier, with the Ruto administration being accused of engaging in a personal vendetta and political witch-hunt.
Cited is the timing, coming just after the former leader has been accused of sponsoring anti-government rallies. The raging political bickering is the last thing the country needs, as it faces serious economic and other challenges, whose tackling should be prioritised.