The United Kingdom and Kenya have strengthened their mutual bonds through a new Security Compact, with the aim of providing a safeguard for their citizens and the wider region. The agreement, signed on Wednesday, May 10, embodies the comprehensive scope of the UK-Kenya security collaboration.
The ceremony, which took place at Jogoo House, was graced by Kenya’s Interior CS Kithure Kindiki and UK Security Minister Tom Tugendhat. They were flanked by the UK’s High Commissioner to Kenya, Jane Marriot. The contract promises intensified cooperation in various areas, including combating terrorism, enhancing both aviation and maritime security, and offering mutual support in investigating and prosecuting terror-related cases, primarily through specialized courts.
“I am delighted to welcome UK Security Minister Rt. Hon. Tom Tugendhat for bilateral discussions and the signing of the Kenya-UK Security Compact 2023,” declared Kindiki. He further explained that the agreement would serve as a roadmap for cooperation in countering emerging security threats on national, regional, and global scales.
The Compact also focuses on the training of Kenyan police forces, aiming to bolster their capacity in handling complex criminal activities. “Our goal is to continually develop the skills of our tactical specialized units to counter intricate criminal endeavors, including banditry and money laundering,” added Kindiki.
Emphasizing the shared history between the two nations, UK’s Security Minister, Tom Tugendhat, endorsed the cooperation. He acknowledged Kenya’s vital role in East Africa’s security, stating, “Kenya matters to Britain. The sight of Kenyan troops marching with other Commonwealth forces at HM The King’s Coronation serves as a reminder of our shared history and the promise of a potent future.”
While in the country for a two-day tour focusing on security matters, Tugendhat highlighted the beneficial impact of the partnership, stating, “By collaborating with Kenya, we are ensuring the safety of both our nations.”
The signing of this Security Compact is another testament to the long-standing amiable relations between Kenya and the UK. Their cooperation spans a variety of domains, including socio-economic matters, security, and diplomacy. This was recently exemplified on March 8, when the Kenya-UK Economic Partnership Council signed its inaugural trade agreement in London, intending to boost the annual trade volume between the two nations, currently standing at KSh 167 billion (£1.1 billion). The deal aims to secure jobs, stimulate economic growth, and encourage agricultural development and manufacturing in Kenya.