16 Coast residents killed by cops or missing since 2017 - Haki Africa

Haki Africa executive director Hussein Khalid with programme coordinator Salma Hemed and rapid response officer Francis Auma during a press briefing in Mombasa, October 30, 2017. /John Chesoli
Haki Africa executive director Hussein Khalid with programme coordinator Salma Hemed and rapid response officer Francis Auma during a press briefing in Mombasa, October 30, 2017. /John Chesoli

Sixteen people either went missing or were executed by police during counter-terrorism operations at the Coast last year, a local rights report shows.

Of the 16 cases, Haki Africa says 11 were of extrajudicial killings, four of forced disappearances and one of a person who went missing but was found later.

“Although there are many other cases that Haki Africa heard, they were not included in the report as their authenticity or veracity could not be confirmed,” states the report that reviews the year 2017.

Reached for comment on the killings, Coast regional commander Larry King said he had not seen the contents of the report but that some of the people who were killed were armed and wanted criminals.

Among those listed in the report areLamu based Fareed Omar Awal- a wanted terror suspect - and Fatma Mohamed, who had been missing for about a month before they were found dead.

Their bodies, which were found in Naivasha on April 16, had strangulation marks and acid had been poured on them.

Mohamed Ibrahim Shee, Babu Mustafa Sheti, Juma Abdalla Musa were shot dead by police on May 17.

“Two other bodies of people shot by police were also lying at Coast General Hospital, bringing the total number of bodies to five," the report notes.

"The families cried foul alleging their their kin were first arrested before being extrajudicially executed."


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'Abductions carried out by police'

On February 26, the report says, Mohamed Mwamuraji was killed in Kwale by officers from the Anti-Terror unit and the Flying Squad.

Mwamuraji had been listed as wanted by police for involvement in terror activities. Police said he had just returned from Somalia.

On June 24, Barsheba resident Faraj Rashid was abducted at his work place by unidentified persons who were in Probox and Prado cars.

After profiling, the suspect was released by people he said were police officers. But he went missing after he was called to pick his phone, which they had retained.

"To date his whereabouts are not known," the report says.

The whereabouts of Bwanaheri Avukeme, Popo Nassir and Abubakar Abdulkadir-Shebe are also unknown.

Avukeme was picked by police officers outside Muhuri's office in Malindi on August 22. Families and rights agencies have since applied for habeas corpus.

Fifty six-year-old Abdulkadir-Shebe, a Malindi based businessman, was picked by people who introduced themselves as police officers as he came from a mosque after Maghrib prayers on November 17.

Likoni vendor Mohamed Zingizi, 28, was picked by unidentified people on December. He was released later after Haki Africa and Coast MPs followed up on his case.

“He reported that the people who took him were police officers who thought he knew the whereabouts of a terror suspect known as Kassim. This case confirmed that these types of abductions are actually carried out by police officers,” the report adds.

Ali Mtsomo alias Khalid, Hussein Omar and Mohamed Kahanda were also killed last year.

Mtsomo was shot by anti-terror police unit in Likoni on December 8, on allegations that he was an al Shabaab recruiter.

Omar was killed in Bamburi on August 18 for being behind Mpeketoni attacks while

Kahanda was picked by unknown persons suspected to be police in Changamwe on September 17.

A few days later, his body was found at Wundanyi mortuary in Taita Taveta. Police reported that it had been collected from Ndii area along Mombasa-Nairobi highway.