20 April 2018

Kenya: Mathira West Police Chief Kiptoo Birgen Interdicted

Mathira West police commander Kiptoo Birgen has been interdicted after a man was filmed slapping a woman in full glare of police officers at a police station.

Inspector-General of Police Joseph Boinnet on Friday also ordered “full inquiry into the assault” at Kiamariga Police Station on Wednesday.

SLAP

Mr Birgen, a senior superintendent of police, is the Officer Commanding the Police Division (OCPD) and all stations in the area, including Kiamariga, fall under his command.

The stations are headed by chief inspectors.

Mr Boinnet gave the order in Mombasa where security chiefs are meeting members of the parliamentary committee on National Security and Administration.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i is leading the security team in the talks.

The man was captured on video slapping election observer Martha Miano during Ruguru Ward by-election.

The suspect attacked Ms Martha allegedly after she raised concerns of voter bribery.

She was slapped and roughed up by man who wanted to eject her from the station on grounds that she was a campaigner for one of the candidates in the by-election.

The woman was assaulted at the as police officers watched but the attacker managed to leave the station without being arrested.

SH10,000 BAIL

The suspect was arrested on Thursday but freed after posting a Sh 10,000 bail.

After he was freed, the beleaguered OCPD was defensive: “We tried to contain the situation as much as we could. This morning, we arrested the suspect. He was able to post bail.”

He said they were waiting for Ms Miano to submit a P3 report before charging the suspect.

Before his arrest, leaders in the county, led by Nyeri Governor Mutahi Kahiga, condemned the incident and faulted the police for their slow response.

Nyeri MP Ngunjiri Wambugu said incident was shameful and had tainted the county’s image, insisting that Jubilee Party abhors violence.

The lawmaker wondered why police officers at Kiamariga Police Station failed to arrest the suspect on the spot.

Mr Ngunjiri, who is also a member of the National Assembly's Administration and National Security Committee, said MPs will investigate the laxity displayed by the officers.

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