MPs to probe sanctioned killings

October 11, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 11 – The Parliamentary Select Committee on Administration and National Security has formally commenced investigations into alleged extra-judicial killings in the country, and vowed to give tough recommendations.

Led by its chairman Fred Kapondi, the committee spent a better part of Monday in meetings with police and members of the Provincial Administration in Lari District before they toured Kinale forest where bodies of six young men were found dumped two weeks ago.

“It is a serious matter to have people killed and their bodies dumped in forests like this, we must get to the bottom of this matter,” he told journalists in Lari.

Up to 14 people have been found murdered and their bodies dumped in forests over the past month.

They include eight people whose bodies were discovered in Kiambu and Karura forests on diverse dates within the month of September.

Mr Kapondi told journalists that the committee had earlier pledged to give a report to Parliament within one week but would have to extend the period to enable them cover other parts of the country where similar incidents have been reported.

They include Ngong forest, Machakos, Gatundu, parts of Rift Valley and the Coastal region where people killed under mysterious circumstances were discovered dumped with bullet wounds.

He did not give indication when investigation would end only saying “we will look at all those areas where similar murders have occurred.”

Police in areas where the bodies were found said the mysterious murders were under investigation but linked some of the killings to “rivalries within the Mungiki gang.”

On Monday, Mr Kapondi told reporters that the committee was investigating claims by relatives of those killed that their kin were arrested by the police and later killed.

“It is also critical for us to talk to the relatives to tell us if they [deceased persons] were arrested before they were found. We want to know what really happened,” he said.

Police from Lari and Kiambu East district accompanied the MPs to the forest where they held a brief session.

It is not the first time police are implicated in mysterious murders in the country.

In February 2009, the United Nation’s Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial killings Prof Philip Alston toured the country for nine days and filed a damning report which indicted the country’s law enforcement agencies in an elaborate execution scheme.

He said police were responsible for the murders of thousands of youths killed in the name of fighting Mungiki.

The Kenya National Commission on Human Rights and other local lobby groups have on several occasions filed similar reports accusing the police of committing extra-judicial killings.

The police through their Spokesman Erick Kiraithe deny this and maintain that any such killings are thoroughly investigated by the Criminal Investigations Department.



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