, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 17 – The Independent Medico Legal Unit, a lobby group against torture now wants Isiolo County Commissioner George Natembeya to denounce a shoot to kill order he allegedly made on November 12 against anyone carrying firearms.
IMLU Executive Director Peter Kiama says the order disregards the Constitution and will only serve in aggravating insecurity in the region.
Kiama wants the Director of Public Prosecutions to investigate the utterances with a view of instituting proceedings against the County Commissioner.
“We wish to unequivocally express our dismay at this order that is not only a license for extrajudicial executions but also militates against the rules of natural justice, where one is assumed innocent until proven guilty through a competent judicial process,” he said.
“In addressing crime and insecurity the law has to be safeguarded and such an order is an outright affront to the provision of article 26 of the Constitution on the right to life and an unacceptable violation of the National Police Service Act 2011.”
He has urged the County Commissioner to heed to their appeals and further assure the residents of Isiolo his commitment to safeguard the Constitution and the rule of law.
“We’d wish to bring to your attention the provisions of the Sixth Schedule of the National Police Service Act 2011 that sets out the rules and procedures on use of force and firearms by police officers,” reads an open letter directed to the County Commissioner.
He says such directive belongs to the past and is against the ongoing police reforms.
He noted that the law is categorical that force and firearms will only be used where less extreme means are inadequate; ostensibly to protect life and for self-defence.
“As such, blanket shoot-to-kill orders from anyone must be treated with the contempt they deserve,” he stated.
IMLU has further expressed its willingness in helping the county establish the County Policing Authority, “with a view to putting in place a more sustainable approach to public safety and security in the county.”
“Shoot-to-kill directives are a thing of the past and should not be replacements to an integrated community driven security agenda for this country.”
Isiolo County has of late experienced increased cases of insecurity resulting from cattle rustling.
The National Police Service has come under sharp criticism over allegations of infringing on people’s human rights, extra-judicial killings, accusations police have refuted.