Private Security Regulatory Authority (PSRA) has faulted the Kenya Railways Corporation over a tender to hire the services of a private security company.
In a memo to Kenya Railways dated February 12, 2024, PSRA noted that the transport company did not list all the requirements for a private security company to be hired.
Among the requirements that PSRA says were left out include legal and regulatory compliance certifications, which are a prerequisite requirement.
"In the said advert, we have noted that the Kenya Railways Corporation intends to procure private security services. However, we have observed that you have not included legal and regulatory compliance certifications as a prerequisite requirement as is required by Kenyan statutes. Sections 21 and 28 of the Private Security Regulation Act No. 13 of 2016 require that no person shall engage in the provision of private security services or offer private security services in Kenya at a fee unless that person has been security vetted and registered by the Private Security Regulatory Authority in accordance with the Act," the memo read in part.
According to the regulatory authority, Kenya Railways would be committing an offence by hiring a firm which does not meet all the legal requirements.
"It would be an offence for Kenya Railways Corporation to procure services of any Private Security Company that does not satisfy the requirements of Kenyan laws specifically the provisions of Sections 21, 23, 28, 29 and 31 of the Private Security Regulation Act No. 13 of 2016. The Guard Force Number (GFN) is the only proof that an individual private security officer (security guard) has been duly registered and licensed by the Authority in accordance with the provisions of the Act," the memo added.
"In view of the foregoing and in compliance with the provisions of the law, the Authority hereby advises Kenya Railways Corporation to only procure private security se es from private security firms that satisfy the requirements of the law and are in possession of the 5-year Certificate of Registration from Private Security Regulatory Authority and Guard Force Numbers (GFNs) issued by the Authority for their private security officers."
In a statement on Tuesday, February 13, 2024, PSRA said that all private security companies must as part of the mandatory tender requirements submit the certificate of registration as a corporate private security service provider and Guard Force Numbers (GFN) issued by the Authority.
"Section 33 of the Act requires all private security officers in the employment of a private security service provider to be registered by the Authority. The Act further makes it an offense for a private security service provider to have in its employment private security officers who aren’t registered with the Authority," the statement read.
PSRA cancels licences
This comes at a time when nine private security firms have lost their licences for failure to comply with legal requirements.
On February 5, 2024, PSRA issued a legal notice cancelling the operating licenses of nine companies offering private security services.
Early this month, 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."