Security Management and Private Security Companies in Kenya
Burudi, Zachariah M
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In the contemporary world the Corona Virus of 2019 (COVID 19) has led to curtailed or total closure of businesses. The world therefore has been experiencing economic ‘melt down’ as businesses strive to stay afloat. This pressure has led to increase in crime, and globalization has exported crime and other vices which challenge security. This trend has led to a strain on state security agencies, compromising their performance and creating gaps. In Kenya, since the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) entered Somalia in pursuit of Al Shabaab insurgents, the attacks by the insurgents to Kenyan soft targets inreased. The pressure on security agents coupled with their low number has led to state fragility within the borders which necessitates presence of Private Security Companies (PSCs) to bridge the gap. This study sought to investigate the effects of PSCs on security management in Nairobi. The general objective of this study was to establish the effects of PSCs in Security Management in Nairobi. The specific objectives were one to establish how capacity of PSCs affects security management, two to investigate how vulnerabilities of PSCs affect security management and three to examine how organizational structure of PSCs affects security management. This study focussed on Kamukunji Sub County of Nairobi City County which harbours Eastleigh, a very fast growing business hub in Nairobi suburbs that has attracted traders and other opportunists. This study employed both the Integrated Threat Theory and the New Public Management Theory model. Integrated Threat Theory fundamentally highlights conditions that lead to perceptions of threat, which in turn affect attitudes and behaviour. This theory however only creates conditions for the response but has a gap in how this can be replicated in a number of areas or regions. To address the gap, the study focussed on New Public Management Theory model that is designed to decentralize the mode of state operations. This can be achieved through devolving security management activities to PSCs. This study used a descriptive survey research design. To collect the relevant data for the study, the researcher used a structured questionnaire that was administered purposively, interviews and secondary data. This was entered into a program and developed into a database from where it was analysed by use of measures of central tendency and central variability. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to discuss the findings of the study. The sample population that constituted 84 respondents comprised 65.5% male respondents and 34.5% female respondents. It is recommended that, the Private Security Regulator sets minimum academic entry level for PSCs, set and enforce a standardized training curriculum for all PSCs including how to handle firearms, identify the minimum equipment that is required for running a PSC and the required competency in handling the equipment and standardize the remuneration packages for the PSC personnel. The National Intelligence Services (NIS) should cultivate a structured engagement of PSCs to positively vet and build their capacity to enhance counter terrorism strategies. PSCs should be embedded in the ‘Nyumba Kumi’ initiative to assist the local administration in the fight against crime.