Kenya: University Students Threaten Strike Over 'Kinoti Persecution'

24 November 2021

Nairobi — The Kenya Universities Students Union (KUSO) has threatened to mobilise mass action over what they described as 'persecution of the Directorate of Criminal Investigations boss George Kinoti'.

Speaking on Wednesday in Nairobi, the University student union's President Anthony Manyara defended Kinoti over his record as a "fearless crime buster and distinguished officer with high standards of professionalism, fairness, and honesty."

"The very mention of his name sends cold shivers down the spines of hardcore criminals both in and out of prison. DCI George Kinoti has been instrumental in the arrest and locking away of dangerous criminals and terrorists both as a field officer and the various ranks he has held in the Directorate of Criminal Investigations," said Manyara who heads the Kenya Universities Students' Organisation (KUSO).

Manyara pointed out that 'external forces' were behind Kinoti's woes because of his investigative work adding that they will stage demonstrations if Chief Justice Martha Koome fails to speak out over the issue.

"Persons of vested interests are keen on seeing a complete standoff between the judiciary and all other agencies and arms of the government such as the DCI," he added.

Kinoti has been at the centre of a storm since last week when High Court Judge Antony Mrima sentenced him for four months after he was cited for failing to obey court orders to return guns taken away from business Jimi Wanjigi.

Manyara added that the country has enjoyed relative peace under Kinoti's leadership, citing his cooperation with other agencies.

"However, it is important to note that not everyone is sitting pretty, seeing the good work the DCI is doing. A small population of crooks with criminal and terrorism links have sought for all available avenues to intimidate, blackmail or harass DCI Kinoti," he stated.

He is accused of disobeying orders issued in January 2019 directing the DCI, Inspector General of Police and the DPP to return all firearms and ammunition taken from businessman Jimi Wanjigi's home in 2017 when the state raided his home.

Manyara termed Justice Mrima's ruling as "ridiculous, laughable and ill-motivated."

"Ironically, Kamiti Maximum prison holds all the hardcore criminals and terrorists that DCI Kinoti has taken off the streets and put behind bars," he added.

Manyara who spoke in the company of other student leaders demanded that Justice Mrima recuses himself from the case and step aside from the judiciary pending investigations into his conduct following the revelations from former Governor Mike Sonko's leaks which Manyara claimed implicated the judge.

They also called for the cushioning of the DCI, EACC and other agencies mandated to investigate and fight corruption from such counter attacks from the judiciary.

They also called for the revocation of firearm licenses from civilians with a history of misusing them.

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