Kenya Police Salary 2018-2019: Police Service faces mass exit after salary cuts
Graduate and disabled officers have started resigning from their positions after the National Police Service Commission reduced their salaries by as much as half last week.
Officers who have already received their March salaries — paid through the Kenya Police Sacco — told the Nation on Sunday that their take-home pay had significantly been reduced, in some cases by up to Sh26,000.
The adjustments, which have mainly affected graduate police officers and those disabled in the line of duty, were effected this month despite a court order directing the government not to implement the reviews by the NPSC.
The law exempts the disabled from paying taxes for monthly earnings of Sh150,000 and below.
Mobile phone salary notifications of a number of law enforcement officers show that some would earn as low as Sh20 this month while others would get nothing.
The notifications, sent by the Police Sacco since Friday, have infuriated the officers, some of whom have drafted resignation letters.
“I earned negative Sh15,000 this month,” said an officer, whom we cannot name because of the sensitivity of the matter, but whose salary notification we reproduce.
“If I continue working here, I will keep earning zero.”
The officer, who has since tendered his resignation, said he had taken a loan from the sacco based on the consideration that he would be able to pay it every month.
“It is not fair for them to reduce our salaries without even giving us notices,” he said, demanding to know how the NPSC expected the affected officers to settle their bills.
To make matters worse, he had to borrow money to finance his resignation as police standing orders require that an officer quitting the force surrenders a month’s salary and issues a 24-hour notice.
Alternatively, one may serve a three-month notice, which most of the officers are trying to avoid.
Only those who have served for 12 years are eligible for terminal benefits.
A dismayed officer said he wondered why the NPSC had gone against the stipulations of the International Labour Organisation, which bars downward review of salaries.
“We already are living in deplorable conditions and working in very risky circumstances but our employer is taking from us the little we get. It is shameful,” he said.
The Central Organisation of Trade Unions Kenya said the reduction in pay went against the International Labour Organisation’s Convention 95 on protection of wages.
“Under the country’s labour laws, one’s pay cannot be reduced without discussions between the worker and the employer,” Cotu Secretary-General Francis Atwoli said on Sunday.
“This unilateral decision is unfair.”
On Sunday, a group of affected officers met at a Nairobi hotel to discuss the way forward and contribute money towards legal fees as they intend to sue the National Police Service.
Since 1995, when Parliament passed a motion to enhance the salaries of police officers, graduates have enjoyed better starting pay than non-graduates.
The review was implemented by the then Internal Security minister Jackson Kalweo, who directed that graduates should earn like their peers in the civil service for two years after which they should be promoted.
Since then, a graduate joining the force at the lowest rank of Constable is placed at Job Group J, earning a basic monthly salary of Sh36,000 and a prison and police allowance of Sh11,000.
However, lawyers, engineers and doctors in the force are graded higher.
That changed last week when Vigilance House implemented the amendments advised by NPSC chief executive officer Joseph Onyango, slashing the salary of a graduate constable to Sh18,000 and the allowance to Sh9,000.
Graduate officers are also complaining that promotions based on their academic qualifications are not being implemented as senior officers favour their relatives.
Promotions in the service are, however, not automatic as one has to sit interviews, known within the force as boards.
“This is the only institution where a Standard Eight dropout, a Form Four leaver who scored a D- in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education examination, an undergraduate and postgraduate get the same pay,” a police officer told the Nation on Sunday.
Before the implementation of the adjustments — which also included the imposing of taxes on disabled officers — graduate constables earned a basic salary equal to that of a non-graduate inspector, only that the inspectors earned higher allowances because of their rank.
NPS spokesperson Charles Owino defended the adjustments, saying they should not be seen as a ploy to downgrade the officers “since the upward review was an anomaly in the first place”.
“The NPSC acted within the law,” Mr Owino said, adding that officers would earn salaries that are equivalent to their ranks.
“For instance,” he said, “there is no legal authority to pay corporals a salary equivalent to that of an inspector.”
In recent years, graduates have routinely been promoted from constable directly to Inspector after just three years of service, jumping the ranks of corporal, sergeant and senior sergeant.
In February, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i said the government was planning to introduce courses for specialists to join the service as assistant superintendents. Source: Nation
The lowest paid officers will receive a 19 per cent salary hike, the National Police Service has announced, following a review.
Officers in all ranks, from constable to senior assistant inspector general, will start receiving the higher pay from July, NPSC Chairman Johnstone Kavuludi said in a statement on Friday
“Those in the rank of senior assistant inspector general will be awarded a six per cent salary rise,” he said.
“Detailed salary adjustments in each rank converted to Kenyan shillings shall be issued by the IG Joseph Boinnet,” he said.
Kavuludi said consultation on the award of a comprehensive revised pay structure is ongoing and that the public will be updated in due course.
The National Police Service has 12 job groups — from PG1 to PG12 while the civil service has 19 pay scales.
Constables, the lowest-ranked officers, are on scale PG1 while PG 12 caters for officers of the rank of senior assistant inspector general.
The bulk of police officers are constables while there are less than 10 senior assistant inspectors general.
A police officer recruited at the constable level – with only a high school certificate – earns a basic salary of Sh17,000.
The pay is increased to at least Sh36,000 after an officer acquires a degree.
On April 3, hundreds of police officers who graduated last year had not yet been paid.
The officers, mainly constables, said the NPS human resources department told them it stopped salary hikes for constables who get degrees while in service.
The Basic salary structure is summarized in the table below.
Total Per Year
Senior assistant inspector general
Assistant inspector general
Commissioner of police
Inspector of police
Constable/ Fresh Graduate
Kenya Police Salary 2015/2016-2017-2018
The following are the remuneration figures from Constable/fresh graduate of the police training college to Senior Assistant Inspector General.
In the new Kenya Police Salary 2015 Scale/ structure, a Constable/fresh graduate is entitled to a basic salary of Kshs. 32,880 per month. There had been rumors that the police will get a salary increase. Now, as at September 2015, those are no longer rumors but true facts. The basic salary of a police constable in the new pay structure is higher than that of a university graduate who has been recruited by the Public Service Commission. Within a year, a Constable will earn a total of Kshs. 394,560 as basic salary. A Corporal will earn a total of Kshs. 511,920 as basic salary alone (More than half a million). A sergeant will earn a total of Kshs. 546,480 as basic salary. The Basic salary structure is summarized in the table below.