If you have been following the news now trending in Kenya, you know that the government of Kenya through the SECURITY LAWS AMENDMENT BILL 2014, seeks to amend over 20 legislations to tighten counter terrorism. I have gone through the bill and established that the Kenya Citizenship and Immigration Act of 2012 is being amended. Please check section 86-95 of the bill from this link: http://www.hapakenya.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/THE-SECURITY-LAWS-AMENDMENT-BILL-2014.pdf to see the sections being amended.
In brief, this bill if passed today in Parliament, the following are a few issues that will affect our operations:
1. The Permits Determination Committee will now be solely appointed by the Cabinet Secretary in charge of Immigration.
2. Work permits Must be applied for, processed and approved before a foreign national enters the country
3. The conditions for invalidation of Work Permits and Permanent residence have now been expanded.
4. The conditions for Foreign national registration: any one residing for more than three months must register with an Immigration officer and always report his/her change of residence/address or travel.
These are just a few of the issues and I encourage you to read the proposed changes from the bill and with reference to the Act itself. Important to note is that this bill is being debated today in the National Assembly and from the mood now in the country, after the massacre in Mandera, this bill is likely to pass and be implemented. Hotels and places of accommodation have now a bigger role is submitting the list of guests on a weekly basis to the Director of Immigration service… I hope Immigration officers will be empowered to enforce these laws because in my view, even as at now the laws are pretty tough but the enforcement is weak. Companies employing foreigners now need to emphasize on compliance with all laws because there are new sheriffs in town and they are very military in Nature: I mean The new Cabinet Secretary, Hon Major Retired Nkaissery, The Director General of National Intelligence Services Major General Kameru and the Director of Immigration Service Major General Retired Gordon O. Kihalangwa….and probably the new IGP may as well come from there and the team will be full, ready and rearing to go.
Lets wait and see how the national Assembly will debate the bill….. keep watching this space for more stuff.