Police brutality that was witnessed on Friday evening when a government-imposed nationwide curfew to contain the spread of the coronavirus was initiated epitomizes how sick the National Police Force of Kenya has declined into infamy and decay.
Covid-19: Police brutality marks start of curfew #CurfewKenya
Photo Courtesy. pic.twitter.com/kYhpXyZGx2
— Daily Nation (@dailynation) March 27, 2020
Kenya police enjoying beating up people coz they are the ones recording these videos pic.twitter.com/eo2yHJF8Uy
— Mr. #HAPPYFEET (@NovConquer) March 27, 2020
Chaos at the Likoni channel as GSU officers descend on ferry commuters, an hour before curfew. pic.twitter.com/7QnfAUF4GQ
— NTV Kenya (@ntvkenya) March 27, 2020
Terrorising commuters at Likoni ferry with tear gas and beatings is unacceptable! The inadequacy of the available mode of transport rests squarely on the government . Lets hope no arrests will be made for lateness where public transport is clearly the issue #CurfewinKenya
— Martha Karua (@MarthaKarua) March 27, 2020
Who provoked the police? Old locusts! Don’t belittle our intelligence, Charles Owino. You are a police officer who went to schools! Good schools for that matter. https://t.co/HnhIK0WhiP
— Nelson Havi (@NelsonHavi) March 27, 2020
KTA condemns in the highest manner possible such a heinous act by some INCOMPETENT police officers on the ground.
When a transporter submits without fail, and explains that the goods are food-stuffs how do you act in such an inhuman manner?
Who let the dogs out???? #CurfewKenya pic.twitter.com/SH2h04KeD9
— Kenya Transporters (@KTA_Kenya) March 27, 2020
Indeed the incident calls for the speediest and thorough investigation by the office of the Inspector-General and prosecution of the culprits in a court of law.
The Constitution says the Bill of Rights is an integral part of Kenya’s democratic state and “the framework for social, economic and cultural policies” (Article 19(1)).
The essential purpose is to “preserve the dignity of the individuals and communities and to promote social justice and the realization of the potential of human beings” (Article 19.2)).
It is worth noting that the state has an obligation to protect rights. If they fail to provide protection, with the result that a community is terrorised, they might consider legal action against the state, even though they cannot identify their tormentors, writes Prof.Yash Pal Ghai & Jill Cottrell Ghai, Kenya’s Constitution: An Instrument for Change.
“And ‘torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment’ covers a wide range of mistreatment. And says they Constitution, they can never be justified (Article 25).
@DonaldBKipkorir even assuming that some rights have been limited, Article 25 lists rights that cannot be limited under any circumstances. So the police when brutalising people are in direct contravention of Article 25(a). Now cite the law that does what you have tweeted.. pic.twitter.com/0T7p6WQP52
— Olé (@Olez) March 28, 2020
Citizen enemy of the Kenyan State
President Uhuru Kenyatta on March 26 invoked the curfew where there will be no movement at night except for people engaged in essential services.
“The curfew applies to the entire territory of Kenya. No public gatherings or movement is allowed between 7.00pm and 5.00am. The implications of the curfew is that all persons in Kenya shall remain indoors. Only those offering essential services are exempted,” National Police Service Commissioner-General, Hilary Mutiambai said Friday.
According to the Public Order Act, “any person, who contravenes any of the provisions of a curfew order or any of the terms or conditions of a permit granted to him shall be guilty of an offence and liable to a fine not exceeding one thousand shillings or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or to both such fine and such imprisonment.”
We all agree that there is a need to contain the spread of the Covid-19, however, measures in place should also adhere to the respect of the citizens. This is because they are a critical pillar in the realisation of the goal.
To stop the spread which has already claimed one life in the country with many others still in isolation.
At the end of the day, we need to ask ourselves:
What other crimes are rogue police officers committing in collusion with criminals or alone that the public can’t detect?
I think all emergency measures should have a sunset clause – a timeline, perhaps not fixed to a specific day but maybe to an event. Dr. Fauci was on Instagram yesterday talking about how things in the US could go back to normal after the US 'bends the curve" 3/4 #BarazaOnTwitter
— Nanjala Nyabola (@Nanjala1) March 27, 2020