Police say IMLU report on election deaths exaggerated

November 2, 2017 11:31 am
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While IMLU said 36 people were killed, Police Spokesman George Kinoti stated that they recorded 11 fatalities in August and 8 during last month’s repeat election/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 2 – National Police Service says that 19 people were killed during the August and October elections contrary to a report by the Independent Medico-Legal Unit (IMLU) and accused the lobby of exaggerating the figures.

While IMLU said 36 people were killed, Police Spokesman George Kinoti stated that they recorded 11 fatalities in August and 8 during last month’s repeat election.

‘Our attention has been drawn to the report by the Independent Medico-Legal Unit alleging that they recorded 23 deaths during the period of elections between 8/8/2017 and 11/8/2017 and further 13 deaths during the fresh Presidential elections between October 25 and 30th October 2017,” he said.

“The truth is that from our records, during the period between 8/8/2017 and 11/8/2017, there were eleven recorded fatalities under the following circumstances. Tana River County, where two men armed with pangas stormed into a tallying centre and stabbed an IEBC officer. Officers who came to rescue the IEBC official shot dead the two attackers.”

He stated that in Elgeyo Marakwet, a female adult in a crowd that had gathered for that announcement of parliamentary election results was shot by an unknown person and the matter is still under investigation.

He explained that in Nairobi, a total of five people were involved in a shootout with police and were fatally wounded.

He further cited three instances where three people lost their lives during confrontations with the Police.

“In Kisumu County, one person was shot dead during a confrontation between the police and a riotous mob who were maliciously damaging property. The case is pending and under investigation. In Siaya County, during a confrontation with a riotous mob, armed with all manner of crude weapons and attacking the police, one person was shot dead,” he said.

In a statement, Kinoti indicated that the police was never consulted when the report was being prepared and accused IMLU of tainting the image of the department.

Kinoti further stated that the internal affairs unit as well as the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA) are investigating the alleged use of excessive force in quelling riot violence.

According to IMLU, more than 36 Kenyans have been killed by police since August 11, when the results of the Elections were announced.

A Kenyan human rights body announced Wednesday that the 23 people died following the August Elections and another 13, before, during and after the repeat elections done on October 26.

IMLU said there was evidence that the police responded to riots using indiscriminate force with no chance for other models of policing, especially in opposition strongholds.

The organization stated that it had recorded grievous violations of human rights committed by the National Police Service during the elections period.

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