Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Emali Diary Part IV (Day 27-Day 41): By Officer Benjamin Kinyili, Manager Nyandarua Forest Zone

Although the pioneer group of KFS Officers to undergo the paramilitary induction has long finished, passed out and returned back to thr stations, ZM Kinyili was able to keep a diary of every single day of what was a life-changing opportunity and adventure.

Here below is the account of his stay at Emali from Day 27 until the end on Day 41 when senior, colleagues and family joined the proud graduands in a day full of joy as seen in this earlier post .

Another group of 35 senior officers, mostly Assistant Director’s of Forests will be undergoing the same course starting on 18th April. We wish them all the best and hope that one of them will volunteer to keep a public diary of the events there for the benefit of their colleagues and for record. Volunteers can reach me on

Day 27: Friday 05/03/2010
It was adventurous and wild as we negotiated the turn at the Mombasa highway and back to the field for more thrilling physical exercises which really enhanced the body’s physical fitness, in succession the Muster parade was very thrilling after the previous day section attacks where all the uniforms were dirty and officers had to go an extra mile to wash, iron and don them for inspection at theMuster Parade.

The parade rehearsal was very exciting as we embarked on all salutes, slow and quick march and the oath of allegiance. The mood was somber as each officer mediated the final day saying the last line “Ewe Mungu Nisaidie”. “Help Me God” to go out and give service to humanity. The lessons on weaponry were equally interesting as we tackled the pistol and revolver fundamentals for marksmanship principles. In the afternoon Mr. S. O. Owino from KFS Headquarters the legal officer took us through the prosecution of offences under the Forest Act 2005 anchoring them to the constitution of Kenya., the criminal procedure code (CPC) and penal code as well as all other relevant environmental Acts e.g Environment Management Control Act (EMCA 1999) the environmental law framework, water act 2002, the wildlife act 376.

Mr. Karanja – the Accountant from KFS Headquarters presented accountancy, budgetary, implementation and auditing enumerating the challenges in timely accounts submission, budgeting and planning.
The officers were happy to break late in the evening for personal administration with very high expectations for having covered 66% of the course training.

Day 28: Saturday 06/03/2010
The day was wholly dedicated to personal administration, cleaning, ironing and relaxing.

Day 29th Sunday 07/03/2010
The previous night Saturday there were torrential rains until very early in the morning. Officers were happy to go to church and praise and worship the Lord for his grace and mercies as they waited to take the home stretch part of the course.

Day 30: Monday 08/03/2010
For the second Monday running it rained cats and dogs interfering with the morning run, physical exercise and Muster Parade. Immediately after parade we proceeded to the lecture rooms for the weaponry lessons where several terminologies were tackled L.M.A, G.P.MA, MPMG, SLR(FN), POA for proper details please hold your horses these are paramilitary terminologies. We tackled HK-21 which is a light machine gun type which is used as a section level weapon. Later we learned MPMG – Multi – purpose-machine-gun it is a platoon level weapon with high rate of fire and it is the major automatic weapon of infantry unit. The aims of the lessons were to learn general characteristics of the gun, safety, and stripping, cleaning, assembling and safety precautions applicable to their use. Before lunch break we did a lot of pass out parade rehearsal with the commanders for the platoon practicing with the swords and the other two platoons practicing with rifles or slow and quick march.

In the afternoon we were taken through lessons for preparation for the next four days at Ole –Shoboro International range on at Ngong Hills where we were engaged throughout on day and night on range, navigation, pitching of tents, patrols, and night sentry. We assembled the equipment, machete, mess tins, sleeping bags, ponchos, ground sheets and buckets.

These activities are very exciting and full of surprises and these calls upon a commercial break of the diary at APSSC – Emali.
At 9.30 in the evening we received jerseys for the range exercises and activities at the gazetted ole-shoboro international range from the Kenya Forest Service Headquarters issued by the Quarter Master Inspector Namagwa.

Day 31: Tuesday 9/03/10- No entry (To be given in details later)
Day 32: Wednesday 10/03/10- No entry (To be given in details later)
Day 33: Thursday 11/03/10- No entry (To be given in details later)

Day 34: Friday 12/03/10
The commercial break was for real and we experienced life supporting systems skills, where our endurance was tested to the test lever ever. We learned how to adapt to the different life experiences, survival tactics in the wilderness, surprises and above all flexibility to changing world lifestyles. At ole shoboro it was not business as usual but life skills survival tactics where one had to use interpersonal, teamwork and social instinct to fit in dynamic life situations. The experience needs one to discover his potential and apply them to survive. The experience will be discussed and published in future edition because it was beyond expectation and the four days are worth a whole book.

On the last day Friday the Commandant – Administration Police Training Embakasi graced the closing occasion where demonstrations of section attack on field craft and tact was displayed. He also witnessed the competition of range shooting on falling plates targets, where section two emerged winners by clearing the ten falling plates against eight for section one. The commandant who is a sharp shooter cleared systematically all his ten falling plates against combined KFS Deputy Commandant Mr. Alex Lemarkoko, two KFS officers and three Administration Police Training College – Embakasi instructors. The speeches from the APTC – Commandant, KFS Deputy Commandant were inspiring, spirit uplifting, encouraging focused and determination in order to save our forests in Kenya for present and future generations with officers to pass-out (graduate) with confidence flexibility skills, knowledge and attitude to make a difference in forest protection and conservation.

Day 35: Saturday 13/03/10
The day started well after the long tired energy sapping activities at the Ngong – Ole Shoboro International Range. The people did their personal administration then organized a party for the course participants and the instructors. The party was successful and colourful at Emali Town which was a good gesture for the participants to the instructors for commendable work they did to mould the participants into an all round trained uniformed and disciplined paramilitary officers within a record time of five weeks. It was a spirit of team work; appreciation and recognition to the good bonding, sharing and exchange of knowledge, skills and ideas for there are long life experiences.

Day 36: Sunday 14/03/10
The participants nursed the hung-overs of the party of the previous day. They prepared for church service and personal administration as they visited kinyozis and hair dressers for haircuts and hair dressings as we embarked on the homestretch for the count down towards the pass out parade on the next Friday.

Day 37: Monday 15/03/10
There were no physical exercises training instead participants signed for the rifles for drill and parade rehearsal at the black office before breakfast. After breakfast lessons on law section on evidence Act was tackled for presentation of evidences at the law court. After 10.00 a.m tea, the course participants went to the black office for arms drill and extra-parade practices. After lunch Sexual Offices Act 2006 was presented to the participants and after more parade rehearsal in anticipation of the Administration Police Band from APTC Embakassi the following day. The rehearsal continued until very late in the cover of darkness at 7.30 p.m.

Day 38: Tuesday 16/03/10
The course participants turned up with beret caps for the first time and after forming up for the parade the rains interrupted. The rains could not allow time for parade because in four times as the parade formed it had to be called off due to heavy rains. In the afternoon as we waited for the KFS Team to arrive and give lecture we cleaned all the rifles we used at the Ngong Ole-shoboro International Range. After lunch the KFS team presented, Anti-Corruption, Officers Ethics Act and Internal Audit by Anne Kaari and Lucy Kusewa. In the evening the rains subsided and the parade rehearsal took place with the AP Band leading with music, trumpets and drums. The participants were very happy and exercised as they marched to the tunes of the band.

Day 39: Wednesday 17/03/10
The day started at a high note with an upbeat mood because it was the countdown to D-day Friday 19th March 2010 the pass out parade day. We started with the parade rehearsal followed by another rehearsal after breakfast with the graduating attire to select the final pass out parade dress number one. It was very colouful, to march with the dress number complete with ranks. It was agreed that the jacket would not be used due to the heat intensity. After lunch lessons on cordon and search was presented followed by another rehearsal before the review by the commandant APTC – Embakassi.

Day 40: Thursday 18/03/10
It was a day with a difference with a lot of excitement as the countdown narrowed to hours before the D-day. The practice and rehearsal started early and the commandant APTC observed the parade incognito and passed a message that we improve on mark timing by lifting the legs up to the knee and thigh level, to chest up and swinging the hands. It was communicated that the final review would be at 9.30 a.m and the preparation befitting the final was at top gear with tents, podium to receive salute, quarter guard mounted to receive the guest of honour.

At exactly 10.00 a.m the Commandant APTC was ready to review the parade as everything was at notch higher. The participants gave their best as March on with the tunes from the band, the General Salute was excellent followed by slow and quick time march, then the advance in review order and finally march off. The Commandant APTC was very much impressed by good parade presentation from the course men. He was happy and emphasized more effort to make it more colourful on the material day. He promised to deliver a lecture at 2.30 p.m after the lunch break on intelligence gathering and organization of national security which he delivered as scheduled. Thereafter we had a discussion with the KFS Deputy Commandant Mr. Alex Lemarkoko on the final day presentation, expectations on the duty station KFS Standing orders and the dressing code in the field. To reduce the work load on the final day we cleaned and oiled the rifles to the use during the pass out parade. Thereafter we had to do personal administration, invite colleagues, friends and relatives to the graduation.

Day 41: Friday 19th/03/10 – Pass out Parade
The mood was full of excitement as each course men was heard saying “it is over-…” as everybody was upbeat as we did our level best to give the classic parade . Our instructors were happy for a job well done and wished us good luck as we went for breakfast and then final presentation.
All invited guests started to stream in at around 8.00 a.m and the preparation was almost over by 8.30 a.m. awaiting the chief guest permanent secretary Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife, Mr. Wamwachai, the chief guest arrived signed the visitors book then had tea.He inspected the quarter guard mounted by the administration police senior staff college – Emali then proceeded to the parade ground escorted by the Commandant APTC and Director Kenya Forest Service.

The Parade marched in slow and quick time with APTC Band providing the following songs to blend the march and entertain the guests for slow march – 1. Men of Harlech 2. Malaika, 3. Mugithi 4. Higher Ground 5. Nipe Uvumilivu, for the quick time march – 1. Mambo Sawa sawa, 2. Vidonge, 3. Yesu Kanikuta Jangwani, 4. Niweze Kukupenda 5. Zilizopendwa.
Everybody was amazed by the colourful display from the participants which showed total commitment, dedication, hard work, determination and focus to do their best. Immediately after the quick time march it was the time for advance in review order and present arms for general salute then the officers recited the Oath of Allegiance followed by the Presentation of Trophies to the best all round Officer Mr. Francis Msumbu, the Best all round Lady Officer Mrs. Charity Munyasya and best marksman Mr. Moses S. Masika.

The speeches followed with welcoming remarks from the Director of Studies CIP Mr. Benson Waweru on behalf of the Commanding officer (CO) Mr. Mwaniki who was away outside the country. He then welcomed the commandant – APTC who enumerated the course contented the Vision, Mission, and Motto and core values of administration police and commented the good partnership between AP and KFS as they Endeavour to serve Kenyan and protect, conserve and manage forests. He then invited the Director KFS who congratulated the participants for endurance, courage, adaptability, determination, focus and image change as now hence for it they will be disciplined and uniformed officers to drive the forest management, conservation, protection, enforcement and compliance. He was happy for developing their skills, knowledge and competence to the highest standards possible through the paramilitary training which should be translated in the field to improve on the forest management and service delivery to all Kenyans.

The Director KFS invited the Guest of Honor the PS Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife Mr. Wamwachai to address the graduates and other guests. He was impressed by the performance of the participants and said he was happy now that the forests will be safe from any destruction as the Forest Sector is undergoing transformation which is geared towards vision 2030 to increase the forest cover to 4% by 2012 and 10% by 2030. He called the officers to exercise what they have learnt in the last six weeks and uphold the Oath of Allegiance and serve Kenyans with dedication and commitment. The parade commander lead the parade in three cheers for the chief guest of honor then parade commander requested permission to march off the parade with APTC Band belting up songs. The participants congratulated each other and the instructors as they adorned the budges of ranks and handed over the rifles to the armourer ready for luncheon.

After the luncheon the course men received their certificates from the Chief Guest and brief speeches were made by the commandant APTC, Commandant KFS – ENCOM, Director KFS then the chief guest the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife. Mr. Fred Ogombe gave the vote of thanks on behalf of the participants followed by group photographs.

In conclusion, I thank the Director – KFS for suggesting the Senior Officers to undergo the Paramilitary Training, his encouragement during the inauguration of the course.
I sincerely thank the Commandant KFS – ENCOM, Deputy Commandant and Head of Communications, Mr. Mworia for their support and keeping the KFS Staff and colleagues informed on our progress at APSSC – Emali.

Finally I would say the course has molded, transformed and changed me through sound knowledge on management, leadership, security issues, legal matters, survival skills and tactics, flexibility, physical fitness, public relations, conflict management and Police Procedures among others.


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