Kenya: Police Open Probe Into Fatal Shooting of Maseno University Student

Nairobi — Police have commenced probe into the shooting of the Maseno University student during Monday's anti-government protests in the Lakeside City of Kisumu.

Inspector General of Police Japhet Koome said Tuesday that police were forced to act after rioters made a forceful entry at the Maseno Police Station.

Koome that the National Police Service remains open to external scrutiny by independent constitutional agencies as they strive to promote and practice transparency and accountability within the Police.

"It is regrettable that even after Officers restrained themselves, and acted within the law; and effectively contained the situation, rioters invaded Maseno Police Station, hulling stones at police officers and property, and in the process, we lost one male student from Maseno University," he said.

The IG revealed that 238 persons were arrested in Nairobi and Nyanza during the nationwide demos.

Of those arrested, 25 were apprehended in Nyanza and 213 in Nairobi.

During the demonstrations, 31 police officers were injured and 10 police vehicles damaged.

"We therefore condemn in the strongest terms possible, the unwarranted violence that was meted against our Officers discharging their official duties," Koome said.

He stated that security personnel had fulfilled their national security mandate professionally, upholding the rule of law and respecting human right.

Despite the provocation by protesters, the IG said security agents used force gradually, beginning with the lowest threshold, such as a show of force, and reinforced it with water cannons and teargas canisters.

This was to prevent the protestors from accessing central business districts of Nairobi and Kisumu and protected areas

The IG maintained that the protests led by Azimio La Umoja One Kenya Alliance leader Raila Odinga and his supporters was illegal.

He went on to say that the unwarranted day-long stand-off that was witnessed in parts of the country amounts to nothing short of violence against police and economic sabotage.

Koome stated that though the demonstrators were allegedly protesting against what they termed as high cost of living, "their sole aim was to invade the State House."

"Apparently, what the organizers purported to be a peaceful demonstration turned into violent crime scenes with protestors engaging in running battles with, and stone throwing at the anti-riot police officers, barricading roads thus hindering freedom of movement for law-abiding citizens," Koome stated.

He reminded the members of public that no one is above the law.

"Instead, there is a slippery slope between freedom of assembly, picketing, and petitioning as enshrined in Article 37 of the Constitution of Kenya, 2010, and the blatant infringement of the rights of others as we saw in yesterday's unlawful demonstrations," he said.

He lauded police across the country for their service and their patriotism in the execution of their mandate.

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