Kenya: Mandago Says Reopened PEV Files Designed for Political Expediency

Armed youths at the height of the post-election violence in 2008 (file photo).
24 November 2020

Nairobi — Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago has faulted the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) for reopening 2007/08 Post Election Violence files saying the agency is on a fishing expedition.

Mandago, while addressing journalists at the county headquarters on Monday, affirmed that the region which was among the most affected by the violence is peaceful and the local government are not aware of threats issued to specific groups further dismissing reports that perpetrators of the 2007/2008 violence are walking scot-free.

His remarks came shortly after DCI announced that the investigation was reopened following what George Kinoti, the DCI Chief, termed as complaints by several communities that are being profiled and intimidated amid rising political temperatures in the country.

"There are matters you can joke with , there are those you should take with the seriousness it deserves. DCI was not formed yesterday, it was there during 2007 and 2008 and therefore, to make allegations that people are walking scot free, you are indicting DCI for failing to do its work that time," Mandago said.

He urged DCI to handle the PEV with caution warning that it is an emotive matter which may elicit unnecessary tension.

"If Kinoti is indeed pursuing justice for citizens who are complaining, I hope that it is justice for people who have voluntary said they have a problem. But is evident from his speech, you don't have to be a psychologist to know that he is operating from an unusual manner," the Governor said.

Mandago further linked it to efforts to revive ICC cases which were reopened after one of the key witnesses, a Kenyan lawyer Paul Gicheru surrendered himself to the Hague-based court.

The Governor's statement was echoed by that of Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen who said the move by DCI is a 'desperate move by the System after failing in all their efforts to bring down the Deputy President."

"They want to incite violence against communities in Rift Valley especially Eldoret to weaken Deputy President's political strength in Mt.Kenya. They may even burn houses or Kill people," he said.

Speaking at the DCI Headquarters on Monday, Kinoti said those who have lodged complaints and expressed fears for their lives include past victims of the 2007-08 Post Election Violence (PEV), the worst electoral chaos in the country that displaced more than half a million people from their homes.

"We will not let it happen again," said George Kinoti, the Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI), "we have received numerous complaints and we are acting on them."

More than 150 people, mainly from Rift Valley-the epicenter of the 2007-08 election violence, recorded statements.

Kinoti said 118 cases had been recorded, including 72 by people whose relatives were killed in the post-election violence and were still receiving threats.

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