A Kenya Defence Forces soldier was on Monday sentenced to five and a half years imprisonment for engaging in recruitment malpractices.
Members of the Court Martial sitting at Lang’ata Barracks led by Colonel Lucas Teimuge and Milimani Senior Principal Magistrate Bernard Ochoi found Corporal Fred Kiptum Kiplagat guilty of obtaining money by false pretence, desertion from duty and issuing a fake KDF recruitment calling letter.
Corporal Kiptum was convicted to two years in jail for obtaining Sh300,000 from Charles Kipkorir on April 4 2021 pretending that he was in a position to help recruit his son Brian Kipkemoi into the military.
He was also convicted to two years in prison for obtaining Sh102,500 from Brian Kipkemoi on the same day pretending that he was in a position to influence his recruitment into the military.
Further, Corporal Kiptum was sentenced to a year in jail for issuing a fake calling letter to the complainant, an act he ought to have known constitutes a criminal offense and additional six-months in prison for deserting his place of work for 90 days without official leave until his arrest on May 3, 2021.
The Magistrate directed that all the charges run concurrently and granted the accused 14 days to lodge an appeal if dissatisfied with the decision of the court.
The second KDF nationwide recruitment drive began on November 15 with a warning against bribes and other malpractices to influence the outcome.
Vice Chief of the Defence Forces Lt Gen Francis Ogolla said the exercise is free of charge and told both serving military officials and public not to seek, offer or receive bribes.
He said 21 military officials are facing court martial for being involved in malpractices linked to past recruitment.
“We will be strict in this exercise to ensure it is clean. If you give or receive a bribe, it is on you alone,” Lt Gen Ogolla said.
He said they intend to take on 18 to 20 per cent of women of 4,000 recruits.
“We are aware of the gender of policy. We have been progressive. Since 2019, we recruited 11 per cent, increased to 15 per cent in 2020. And in January this year, we had 17 per cent women recruited.
“We intend to increase it to 18 to 20 per cent.”
This is the second recruitment this year. Last year’s was halted by the Covid-19 pandemic, hence, authorities are rushing to fill the gap. The cohort that was recruited in February 2021 graduated on November 5, 2021.
The exercise run for the next two weeks until the end of the month.
It was launched at Defence Headquarters, Hurlingham, Nairobi, by Ogolla.
KDF announced it will be recruiting General Service Officers (GSO), Cadets (Regular), General Service Officer (GSO) Cadets, (Graduate degree holders), Specialist Officers, General Duty Recruits, Tradesmen/women and Defence Forces Constables.
Prospective candidates must be Kenyan citizens with no dual citizenship, no criminal record, and must possess a valid national identity card.
Additionally, four copies of the National Identity Card and Personal Identification Number (PIN) Certificate will be required.
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