NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 28 – Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo has asked his officers to ignore a shoot-to-kill order issued by the provincial administration in Mombasa, against gunmen who attacked a church in Likoni last Sunday.
Kimaiyo says police officers must operate within the law, which is explicit under the National Police Service Act.
“Nobody in this country is authorised to shoot-to-kill whether it is a law enforcement officer. Due process of the law must be followed; an officer may be justified to use his official firearm when his life is in imminent danger,” Kimaiyo said on Friday in response to a question during a meeting with members of the Editors’ Guild.
He said there could also be justification to use a firearm when the life of another person is in danger or property is at risk.
“And when we say property, it is massive property; we are not talking of the mobile when it is snatched by a criminal.”
He explained that the use of firearms “is not to shoot to kill. When we talk of justifiable instances of using that firearm effectively, it is to enable you arrest a particular person.”
He said that even he could not order policemen to shoot-to-kill, since such a decision can only be made at the discretion of the officer at a scene of crime.
The controversial shoot-to-kill order was issued by Mombasa County Commissioner Nelson Marwa. READ Shoot to kill order against Likoni attackers
Speaking on Wednesday in Mombasa, Marwa stressed that police had intensified their hunt for the gunmen who left six people dead in Likoni.
“These are not people to be arrested since they have also killed others. If we find any of them, we will finish them on the spot. They are not people to take to court. Who is going to be your witness in court? What witnesses will be used?” he posed.