Private security companies ordered to return IDs, personal documents belonging to security guards

By , K24 Digital
On Wed, 3 Apr, 2024 09:48 | 2 mins read
Priate Security Regulatory Authority CEO Fazul Mohamed
Priate Security Regulatory Authority CEO Fazul Mohamed. PHOTO/@PSRAuthority/X

Private security companies have been ordered to return national IDs, academic certificates and other essential personal documents belonging to private security officers within 48 hours.

In a statement on Wednesday, April 3, 2024, Private Security Regulatory Authority (PSRA) CEO Fazul Mohamed termed the practice of holding such documents as an illegality.

"The Authority is in receipt of numerous complaints from private security officers (security guards) alleging that private security companies are unlawfully and illegally withholding their National IDs, academic certificates, and other essential personal documents. This is in violation of the law, terms and conditions attached to the certificate of registration and the code of conduct for private security service providers," Mohamed said.

The authority has threatened to cancel the operating licences of private security companies which do not comply with the order to return the documents.

"Section 32 and 55 of the Private Security Regulation Act No. 13 of 2016 mandates the Authority to take action, including but not limited to cancellation of licence, of a private security service provider on the grounds of misconduct, unprofessionalism, breach of the Act or the code of conduct. In view of the foregoing, all private security companies are hereby directed to immediately cease and desist from the aforementioned illegality and to within the next 48 hours hand over all National IDs, academic certificates, and other essential personal documents to private security officers (security guards)," Mohamed added.

Mohamed has directed that any private security officer whose National ID, academic certificates, and other essential personal documents are being withheld by any private security company to report to the authority.

"The authority will ensure this illegality is put to a stop. This measure is being enforced to address and rectify the unlawful retention of personal documents belonging to private security officers by security companies. The authority is committed to ensuring that the rights of private security officers are upheld and that any form of exploitation is eradicated. Failure to comply with this directive will result in appropriate legal action being taken against the specific private security companies including revocation of their operating licences," he added.

Private security battles

The directive unlocks another battle between the companies and the authority, which have been at loggerheads over Ksh30,000 minimum wage for guards.

In February, PSRA issued a notice calling for a new minimum wage of Ksh30,000 per guard, which did not sit well with some private security firms.

"Strive to ensure all private security officers employed or otherwise engaged by the company are paid a basic minimum monthly wage of Ksh30,000 for those operating within the Nairobi Metropolitan Area and Ksh27,183 for those operating outside Nairobi Metropolitan Area," the notice read in part.

"That we hereby without any reservations whatsoever, commit to comply with the government-set minimum wage as per legal Notice No. PSRA/005/2023, the guiding principles under Article 238 (1) and 238 (2) (a) and 9(b) of the constitution, the Private Security Regulation Act No. 13 of 2016 and the terms and conditions attached to the certificate of registration."

The companies have been fighting the directive, terming it unreasonable.