Who We Are
The Witness Protection Agency provides special protection, on behalf of the State, to persons in possession of important information and who are facing potential risk or intimidation due to their co-operation with the prosecution and other law enforcement agencies. Article 50 of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 provides for the protection of witnesses and vulnerable persons in the interests of fair hearing before courts and tribunals and this forms the basis of our mandate. Our Agency provides the framework and procedures for giving special protection to such persons to ensure an effective and efficient administration of justice in the country.The Agency is guided by the following pillars C.I.I. H.A.O.U.):Covert Capability, Institutional Independence, Inter-Agency Collaboration, Human Rights Approach, Accountability, Operational Autonomy and Unity of Purpose.
The Agency conducts its business guided by (T.I.C√.B.I.D.):
Our Main Functions
- Establish and maintain a witness protection programme;
- Determine the criteria for admission to, and removal from, the witness protection programme;
- Determine the type of protection measures to be applied;
- Advise any Government ministry, department, agency or any other person on the adoption of strategies and measures on witness protection; and
- Perform such other functions as may be necessary for the better carrying out of the purpose of this Act.
Our Agency is a government body corporate established under Section 3A of the Witness Protection Act 2006. We became fully operational on 1st September 2008 vide Legal Notice No. 110 of 2008 dated 19th August, 2008. Amendments to the Act were made Act No.2 of 2010 an Act No.45 of 2016).
Independence of the Agency
Our Agency has all the powers necessary to perform functions under the Act without interference from any authority. For the purposes of accountability, we report to the Attorney-General on the overall fulfilment of our objectives and purpose and the performance of our functions under this Act.
We are a partner in the Programme for Legal Empowerment and Aid Delivery in Kenya (PLEAD). PLEAD is a partnership involving the Government of Kenya, European Union, United Nations and civil society that is improving the delivery of justice services and use of alternatives to imprisonment. Launched in 2018, the KSh 4.2 billion partnership is funded by the European Union. Through PLEAD, we are accessing technical assistance from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) that is contributing to our enhanced service delivery and efficiency. Examples of cooperation through PLEAD include:
- Developing our standard operating procedures and policies in line with national legislation and international standards
- Developing and implementing a comprehensive training curriculum for protection officers, including formulating training manuals
- Undertaking an equipment needs assessment and procuring vital witness protection equipment based on the findings
- Contributing to raising awareness of the WPA mandate and services among other justice institutions and Kenyan citizens, for e.g. design and product