What is happening to the Criminal Investigation Department? Once famous across Africa for its professionalism, the department has of late been left gasping as criminals roam free.
The CID is the backbone of police investigations. Its officers are trained detectives, supposedly skilled in gathering evidence and tracking suspected criminals, so what is going on?
Of late there is increasing frustration over the ability of the once heralded department to live up to its reputation.
In Langa’ta, Nairobi for instance, a youthful gang that robs business establishments and private homes at gunpoint day and night remain free.
In one particular case linked to the gang, one suspect arrested in May over theft of household goods and a vehicle is in custody, but the CID is yet to track and apprehend his accomplices who continue to terrorise the neighbourhood. In fact the suspect was only arrested with the help of the “ Flying Squad”.
The fact that the other suspects remain at large raises questions over the ability of the CID to tie up loose ends in cases where human life is at stake, and dangerous suspects need to be locked up and evidence secured.
This situation is mirrored in areas like Bungoma County where the local police appear unable or unwilling to arrest known criminals invading homesteads in the dead of night.
Detectives are being accused of laxity in executing their work, and always complaining of lack of resources. The CID must make do with the resources at its disposal and fight crime.