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Sunday, August 20, 2017

Police slam NASA, KNCHR over deaths in post-election demos

Police patrol through the streets of Mathare, in Nairobi, Kenya, August 13, 2017. /REUTERS
Police patrol through the streets of Mathare, in Nairobi, Kenya, August 13, 2017. /REUTERS

Police have slammed the Opposition and rights activists saying they have only recorded six deaths in the last two days of post-election protests.

The Kenya National Commission on Human Rights said 24 people have been killed across the country from police brutality since August 8.

Chairperson Kagwiria Mbogori said on Saturday Nairobi accounts for the highest number of casualties with 17 deaths that occurred mainly after the announcement of presidential election results on Friday night.

On their part, NASA principals put the death toll at 100.

Read: NASA claims 100 killed in post-poll chaos, reject Uhuru re-election

But in a statement to newsrooms on Sunday, IG Joseph Boinnet said the allegations were untrue.

"These allegations are unfounded and have no basis in fact and are clearly aimed at escalating tensions in the Country," spokesman George Kinoti said.

Kinoti said they have only recorded six deaths "in which criminals armed and acting with deadly intent attacked Police officers attempting to effect arrest."

He said they recorded two deaths in Ruaraka where the criminals were shot dead while breaking into a supermarket at Kasabuni.

"When challenged to surrender, they attacked the law enforcement officers with machetes with an intent to harm them," he said.

Kinoti said another was shot dead in Starehe where there was a group of 25 people armed with assorted crude weapons breaking into private houses and who menacingly challenged and charged at police officers.

"The fourth and fifth criminals were fatally neutralised after a gang of six broke into a shop in Kariobangi, Nairobi," he said.

He said as the police pursued them, they fired at the officers who fired back in defense.

Kinoti said the sixth fatality occurred in Kisumu when a criminal was shot after a large riotous mob blocked Dago-Kiboswa road and barricaded it with bonfires and stones and attacked motorists and pedestrians.

"The Police Officers attempting to effect arrest were also attacked," he said.

Read: Agony as 6-month-old infant slips into coma after police beating

'UNKNOWN PERSONS SHOT MATHARE GIRL'

Kinoti further said they had learnt the death of the girl in Mathare but noted that it was by unknown people.

"We are also aware of a very sad and the unfortunate incident by unknown persons," he said.

A 10-year old girl was shot dead by police firing "sporadic shots" at protesters in Mathare Area 2 on Saturday morning.

The Mathare North primary school pupil was killed while playing at the balcony of her parents' home.

Read: 10-year-old among 11 shot dead as Mathare post-election anger boils

Kinoti said they are investigating the matter including one where a dead body was recovered alongside a road with fresh wounds in Nairobi's Korogocho area.

"The circumstances of the killing remain unknown. In the last two incidences, we have instituted investigations with a view to establishing authors of the crimes," he said.

'WARNING ISSUED'

He warned members of the public to stop spreading photos of dead bodies that are fake.

"We urge all Kenyans to avoid re-circulating photos that are not verified as real. They are being used to incite & undermine our security," he said.

Kinoti said the police are prepared professionally to protect lives and property from violent rioters.

On August 11, the government criticised the international media for using 'fake violence photos' in different parts of the country to depict the country wrongly.

"We take offence from accredited international media houses who have chosen to mislead the public by using images and video clips from 2007," acting Interior CS Fred Matiang'i said.

Matiang'i said the media houses have been using other unrelated incidents to create a misleading impression of the security situation.

Read: Kenya offended by International media over 'fake violence' photos

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