Kenya’s national security is ranked among the worst in Africa according to the latest Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG) report released in London Monday.
The country recently hit by international terrorists that saw a horrendous attack at the Westgate Mall killing over 67 people last month is grouped with failed nations like Somalia and others facing unmanageable security situations at the bottom of the sheet ranking 52 Africa nations.
Kenya is in position 42 near the edge of the bottom-placed and ranking as poor in personal security for its citizens and visitors and in the safety and rule of law indexes at 36 and 33 respectively.
Speaking to the Nation shortly after releasing the report Ms Hadeel Ibrahim, the Founding Executive Director of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation said that Kenya’s performance has been largely affected by its unstable neighbours adding that the situation is likely to remain the same if the insecurity situation in Somali is not improved.
Apart from the recent Westgate attack Kenya has experienced several grenade attacks in various parts of the country including Nairobi, Mandera, Garrissa and Mombasa among others some reporting fatalities.
“The specific indicators affecting the national security situation in Kenya are derived from cross border tension and a largely chaotic neighbourhood at the horn of Africa,” Ms Ibrahim said.
Kenya’s involvement in the Somali conflict including the deployment of forces in Somalia has also contributed to poor security show in the report.
Ms Ibrahim further stated that the Somali instability has also affected the general regional performance on governance as captured in the report where East Africa has been ranked fourth in the continental report evaluating governance in five regions in Africa.
After the Westgate attack security institutions in Kenya have been blamed for mishandling the rescue mission now shown to have involved about five terrorists.
Kenya apart from recording high fatalities among civilians also lost several security officers during the poorly coordinated rescue mission.
Top government officials including Cabinet secretaries also gave contradicting information during the mission, further confusing the whole operation.
East Africa, combining 11 countries including the Seychelles and Eritrea has always finished fourth since the year 2,000 due to the instability in Somali and previously in the Sudan.
Said Ms Ibrahim: “Somali is bottom placed in the overall continental ranking this has affected other countries and East Africa in general.”
Kenya has also performed dismally in the category of participation and human rights though its overall performance in governance still recorded a slight improvement.
Kenya is ranked 21 in the continent in governance beaten in the region by high placed Seychelles, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.
Zambia is the most internally secure nation while Cape Verde tops the South African region as top performer in observing human rights.
Five South Africa nations are also ranked tops overall in the report Mauritius, Botswana, Cape Verde, Seychelles and South Africa scoring highly on governance.
However The 2013 IIAG shows that 94 per cent of Africans — including those in Kenya — live in a country that has experienced overall governance improvement since 2000.