Nairobi Regional Commander Rashid Yakub has maintained that all police officers must wear the new Persian blue uniforms while on duty.

Last week, Rashid issued a directive ordering all police officers to secure the new uniforms.

“It has been observed that some officers of other ranks are wearing the old uniforms while reporting on duty with some members of inspectorate still wearing the old khaki uniforms. This is despite the fact that the new medium blue uniforms for all general duty police officers were launched in late 2018 and have been on the issue since then,” said Rashid in a memo dated September 11.

“All officers must be in the new medium blue uniform, except for the formed-up units who have their own order of dressing. In addition, all officers are cautioned against mixing uniforms or wearing non-uniform items alongside the uniform. Failure to comply with these instructions will attract serious disciplinary action,” Yakub said.

This sparked protests from a section of junior officers who complained that they have to dig into their own pockets.

However, the Nairobi regional commander has downplayed the complaints saying the directive was well thought out and aimed at ensuring discipline in the Nairobi police force.

“It is common that some people will always be opposed to any change. The noise you are hearing about the blue uniform for the last few days is no different but we are not ceding ground, all officers must put on the blue uniform,” he told the Star on Wednesday.

“We want to put an end to a culture where officers are just wearing anything in the name of uniform. In fact, we have directed that no officer should wear the old jacket on the new uniform.”

Yakub said there is a worrying a culture where some police officers laze around while others hide from discharging their duties.

“I have not come to Nairobi for a show, I must perform and for me to perform, my juniors must also perform. If I wake up early and report to work, why should an officer not report to their station? we must embrace a culture of being honest to our duties. If you are in charge of traffic, clear the jam and not just about collecting Sh50 as a bribe if you should be on patrol please do so and don’t hide,” said Yakub.