21 September 2013

Kenya: Woman in ICC Internet Saga Flees Eldoret Home

A woman whose photograph circulated in social media as the ICC witness number 536, has claimed her life is in danger. 27 year old Rahab Muthoni said she has been forced to leave her Eldoret home in fear of her life.

"I have had to keep away from friends, the public and neighbours due to threats against my life," Muthoni. Muthoni said she has been threatened by callers who saw the photograph in social media.

She said the callers believe she is the same person testifying against Deputy President William Ruto and Journalist Joshua Sang at the Hague based court. Muthoni said she reported the matter to police in Eldoret on Thursday. She says police should provide her with adequate security.

Muthoni said she is not connected in anyway to the ICC case."The photograph circulating is mine but I have nothing to do with the ICC cases. I am not a witness in any case though I was a victim of the post election violence,"she said after recording a statement with the police.

Muthoni, a resident of Munyaka estate in Eldoret says she is not aware of how her photograph was obtained for use in the social media.

"I now fear for my life because those involved in perpetrating the violence may follow me up and harm me,"she told the police.

Eldoret West police boss Ndungu Waikonya says the threats against Muthoni are under investigations. He said Muthoni will be provided with security if need be."We are assesing and investigating her complaints. We will assure her of security if need be,"Ikonya said.

Muthoni received many calls from friends and relatives who sought to know why the picture was in the social media. "Some already began condemning me for going to The Hague to testify even without asking me whether it was true I had gone to testify. I am in shock,"she said.

She told the police that some of her neighbours in Eldoret had already nicknamed and mocked her as "Rahab the witness" and that she now felt really threatened.

She says the photo was taken by a friend so that she could use on her Face Book but she does not know how it got to the social media.

"I want the police to provide me with security because some people may harm me. Meanwhile I have to go and live with a friend so that my sceurity is not jeopardized,"she said.

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