Locally owned security have been accused of leading an opposition against the new Private Security Regulations 2019 which seeks to reform and improve life’s of poorly paid security guards in the country.
Out of over 2000 registered security firms in Kenya only 10 foreign owned companies are in full support of the of reforms that will streamline the country’s private security sector
Last week Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i gazetted new regulations touching on the operations of firms licensed to offer services in the industry.
The regulations touch on virtually all aspects of the firms operations and duties ranging from recruitment of staff, pay, training and licensing to handling of diverse equipment, personal safety, among others.
According the then Kenya National Private Security Workers Union Secretary General Isaac Andabwa,the firms opposed are in fear of losing billions of cash they exploit the workers.
Andabwa said the regulation which will be in place within months will create a database of all security workers, their remunerations and all their details similar to Huduma Numba.
“These companies have lot of money because they pay no tax to Government, NHIF,NSSF due to poor policies governing the industry,” said Andabwa
Some of foreign companies in support of new regulations include KK, G4S, Wells Fargo, Ultimate Security,Fidelity among others
Andabwa said the streamlining of the sector will immensely boost the Government revenue besides creating thousands of job in a sector that has bee neglected for long.
He noted that professionalizing the sector was paramount in tackling today’s security challenge which include terrorism and modern day bank robberies.
Critics have used the debate on arming private security guards to insinuate the security guards are angling to take over the assignments of police officers.
The union has started a countrywide training drive across the Counties on the new Private Security (General) Regulations Act 2019.
The Secretary General said the move aims to acquaint individual and corporate private security service providers with the law.
After training, all service providers are expected to undergo vetting before being registered under the Private Security Regulatory Authority.
Those that fail to be registered will be deemed to be illegal and face prosecution.
“We should not politicize the Act so as to enforce it effectively. Private security officers will complement the police hence being given tools of trade such as guns will not be an issue,” Mr Andabwa said.
Andabwa said besides opposition the Union was happy that the President was fully behind the reforms that will turn around the industry.
The guards are seeking a minimum basic salary of Sh30,000 and a house allowance of Sh5,000 per month once the regulations gets in force.
“We are in full support the efforts of the President who has fully recognized the great efforts of security guards in supplementing the work of the police, Kenya under Jubilee has transformed and we are happy to be part of the reforms,” he said.
Andabwa said time has come to those opposed to reforms going around the country to fully embrace the changes that are meant for the well-being of Kenyans