More than 300 commandos in the special forces unit of the General Service Unit (GSU) are said to have resigned in the past one year due to poor pay and mistreatment by their seniors.The highly trained security officers told a local newspaper that most of them are frustrated as their bosses pocket allowances paid when hired by private entities to offer security.
Officers who spoke to the the Star on condition of anonymity said their bosses are using their positions to pocket allowances paid to them by the private companies hiring their services.
They said their seniors have refused to let the companies pay the allowances to individual officers’ bank accounts.
The officers said their colleagues recently escorted a convoy of UN transit lorries carrying weaponry from Malaba to Mombasa before they were shipped to Egypt, but have not been paid.
“They spent more than three days on the road and none of them has been paid anything,” said a Recce officer.
The officers said former colleagues have sought employment with the UN and the US embassy.
A local university is said to have hired six while real estate firms have employed the highly trained officers to heighten security in business and residential premises.
“A former colleague now works for a real estate firm in Westlands, Nairobi. Some of us have interviewed for jobs in private firms and are leaving very soon,” an officer said.
Kenya Airways, University of Nairobi, Mumias Sugar, World Vision, Kasneb, Knight and Frank Real Estate and Holdings, Tullow Oil Exploration Company and Kenya Power Company are said to be among institutions that have managed to offer attractive packages to officers from the Recce squad.
Some wealthy individuals have also contracted the services of Kenya’s best-trained security personnel, meaning the government will be forced to train others to fill the gaps.
There about 1,200 Recce officers in the country.
Recce squad officers undergo training in VIP protection, handling explosives, anti-terrorism, sky marshal and rescue operations both at the GSU training school in Embakasi, their headquarters in Ruiru and abroad.