University Security Officers Trained on Taking Witness Statements

University of Nairobi staff from the Security Department has been trained on how to write
comprehensive witness statements that will lead to convictions. The one day training took place at the
University of Nairobi Towers on January 31, 2020.

University Security Officers Trained on Taking Witness Statements

Speaking during the training exercise, the University of Nairobi Vice Chancellor, Prof. Stephen Kiama,
took the opportunity to thank the staff for their role in keeping law and order, protection of lives and
property. “The aim of this training is to help you write appropriate witness statements that will help us
arrive at immediate conclusion. Statements should be factual and help us arrive at conclusions
immediately. We are interested in knowing the truth, not fixing anyone. Statements should be prompt,
fresh and help in quick execution of justice, “ he said.

Prof. Musili Wambua from the School of Law observed that security and safety is very important for
protection of life and property and without security, no department can operate. “Investigation leads to
another process. It may lead to acquittal or conviction. The reports you write must secure a conviction
within the University process or in a court of law”, he said.

Security Officers were reminded of their huge responsibility to deal with terrorist threats that target
huge population ready to cause maximum damage. The work of the security agents is to prevent threats
from occurring and if it occurs, then to ensure perpetrators are brought to book. “Statements must be
purposeful; as a security officer, you need to have an end result in mind before you start recording,”
advised Prof. Wambua. He observed that Security Officers should collect evidence, preserve evidence
and ensure conviction.

Ms. Njoki Mboce, one of the lead trainers urged Security Officers to be keen with details during their
investigations. She pointed out that security is before, during and after an incidence occurs. “Detail is
important to ensure that Lawyers don’t puncture holes in your statements in a Court of Law. You need
to ask the right questions to get the right answers from witnesses. Let the answers come forth without
coercing or intimidating witnesses,” she said.

Dr. Constance Gikonyo, took Security Officers through a detailed format of how to write Witness
Statements. Dr. Gikonyo pointed out the importance of taking fresh evidence as soon as the evidence
occurs. The officers were told to establish a relationship with witnesses to enable them to get as much
information as possible. “Tell the witness to recreate the incident. Assist the witness retrieve the
information. Don’t interrogate witness. Avoid prejudiced remarks. Ask probing questions to clarify
facts,” advised Dr. Gikonyo.

Going forward it was agreed that the Security Officers will undergo a detailed, practical and interactive
training session that will lead to a certification.