Unlike in some developed countries, taking out your smartphone to record a police officer in Kenya is usually met with hostility from the cop.

In this era of police brutality and other forms of misconduct, recording encounters with law enforcement can provide useful evidence, but a majority of Kenyans are generally apprehensive about it.

Most times it is out of fear and other times it is a question of whether it is illegal to film police officers.

So is it illegal to record an officer while they are carrying out their duties?

Inspector-General of Police Hillary Mutyambai answered this question on Monday while engaging with Kenyans on Twitter under the hashtag #EngageTheIG.

A Twitter user identified as @Politics2541 posed: Hello Mr @IG_NPS , I’ve been wanting to ask this, is it wrong to record police officers who are either arresting or about to make an arrest? We’ve seen this in US and UK but in Kenya, they will always be inhuman in dealing with the recorder. Kindly clarify.”

Through his Twitter account, Mutyambai said it is not illegal if one records ‘objectively’.

“It’s not against the law to record objectively.#EngageTheIG” Mutyambai tweeted.

The response left Twitter users even more confused as they sought a clarification on what recording ‘objectively’ means.

At the time of publishing, Mutyambai had not explained his response.

Here are some of the tweets.