President William Ruto is gearing up to deploy Kenya Police officers to Haiti in the next two weeks, Principal Secretary of Foreign Affairs Korir Sing’oei has affirmed.
The PS, in an interview with the New York Times on Sunday, revealed that the troops will be deployed after a bilateral agreement between Kenya and Haiti is reached, emphasising that the deployment will be immediate.
He further noted that the deployment will not wait for another court order lifting the deployment ban even though the State had filed an appeal to the ruling.
Sing’oei hinges the government’s decision to deploy the troops on the condition (provided by the court ruling) that the mission could continue if there is a reciprocal arrangement with Haiti.
A collage of Kenyan Police on the streets (left) and Haitian police during a protest (right)
DANIEL OGENDO/RICHARD PIERRIN
“The deployment does not have to await the conclusion of this appeal,” the Foreign Affairs PS told the outlet.
The PS’s statement came roughly a week after President William Ruto told international media outlets that he would push forward with the mission despite the court setback.
The President argued that Haiti had asked for help and a bilateral agreement was already in the works to pave the way for the mission. Kenya has committed to leading other countries in fighting deadly Haitian gangs.
Ruto’s determination succeeds a court ruling by Justice Chacha Mwita who termed the deployment as unconstitutional noting that the National Security Council and the National Police Service (NPS) have no powers to deploy the officers outside the country.
“To be clear, Article 240 does not mandate the Council to deploy police officers outside Kenya. Deployment should be as provided for in part 14 of the Act and only to a reciprocating country,” he directed.
“It is not contested that there is no reciprocal arrangement between Kenya and Haiti and for that reason, there can be no deployment of police to that country.”
“An order is hereby issued prohibiting the deployment of police officers to Haiti or any other country otherwise than any compliance with part 14 of the NPS Act,” he added.
Shortly after, Haiti citizens began jamming the Caribbean country’s radio stations with angst over what would transpire next. Gangs have controlled 80 per cent of the country over the past year.
A photo of the Haiti Police Service