Home Editor's Picks Decision to Slash Police Salaries Declared Unconstitutional
Editor's Picks - Local News - September 30, 2022

Decision to Slash Police Salaries Declared Unconstitutional

Graduate police officers have won a protracted battle with their employer over a decision to slash their salaries and reduce their ranks within service.

Employment and Labour Relations Court Judge Mathews Nduma Nderi ordered the National Police Service Commission and the Inspector General of Police to pay the graduate officers a salary equivalent to individuals in Job Group ‘J’ as they used to earn prior to the decision to reduce their pay.

“The court is satisfied that the reduction in salary and rank was not preceded by a notice to affected police officers and the decision was implemented by the IG of Police and NPSC without giving them any opportunity to be heard,” Justice Nderi ruled.

The IG and the commission reduced the salaries of graduate officers recruited in the years 2006 and 2014 following a prolonged row over graduate police constables who were earning a salary of the officer of the rank of an inspector.

Justice Nderi declared that the IG and NPSC’s unilateral decision to reduce graduate officers’ pay from Job Group J to Job Group F offended constitutional provisions on fair administrative action and fair labour practices.

He further clarified that the decision was arbitrary, unreasonable, and unlawful and quashed a notice by the IG and NPSC in November 2021 which reduced the officers’ salary.

“The officers’ protestation of the decision was ignored by the respondents. That is the IG and NPSC. They did not have any opportunity to be heard on review and or appeal of the adverse decision that had befallen them,” noted the Judge.

The IG had on November 17, 2021 directed that salaries for graduate police officers be reduced from that earned in Job Group J to that earned in Job Group F and effectively demoted them.

“It cannot also by necessary implication be said that the IG and the Commission were given powers by the Constitution of Kenya, 2010 and the NPSA and Regulations made there under to demote and reduce the salary of graduate police officers without following due process,” said Justice Nderi.

The Judge noted that the Commission and the IG had made no pretence or any apologies regarding their failure to involve the officers before making the very adverse decision against them which conduct violates Articles 10, 27, 41, and 47 of the Constitution.

“The respondent’s decision contained in the letter dated 17th November 2021 was unlawful, unreasonable and void ab initio for lack of due process and retroactive application of Legislation to the appointments in violation of their rights under Article 27, 41, and 47 read with Section 4 and 7 of the Fair Administrative Action Act, 2015,” he said.

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