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Matiangi says no policy to execute suspects, despite worrying statistics

By October this year, IPOA was probing 243 killings by police, all committed in the last 12 months/FILE

NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 11- Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi says the government has no policy to execute criminal suspects.

This is despite worrying statistics provided by the Independent Policing Oversight Authority and human rights Organisations led by the Independent Medic Legal Unit.

By October this year, IPOA was probing 243 killings by police, all committed in the last 12 months.

In the last two weeks of October, 18 more suspects of crime were killed, a majority of them in urban slum areas according to the state agency tasked with investigating such incidents.

But even with these killings, CS Matiangi says no person was killed as a matter of policy while urging right groups “to be responsible and balanced in their review of police officers.”

“The police do not execute anyone as a means of policing, such false information often leads to unjustified castigation of police officers in spite of the daily sacrifices they make to protect and serve Kenyans,” CS Matiangi said during a high-level meeting with key players in the Governance, Justice, Law and Order Sector (GJLOS) in his Harambee House office to mark the International Human Rights Day.

He noted that ensuring human rights are not infringed on is parts of the government’s commitment, as the National Police Service continues to undergo through drastic changes meant to enhance professionalism and accountability.

READ: IPOA probing 243 killings by police in twelve months

The Cabinet Secretary asserted his commitment to conclude all cases lodged against rogue police officers and deliver justice to any civilian whose rights might have been abused.

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During the meeting, the CS welcomed the opportunity to have more constructive self-assessment of the National Police Service and declared an annual Criminal Justice Reporting Day where verifiable data will be presented as a tool for measuring the progress made in the implementation of police reforms.

A multi-agency team is set to be formed to spearhead the planning for this day and identify key areas for improvement.

This team will include members of the civil society and actors in the criminal justice sector.

READ: IPOA probes 18 deaths caused by police in past one week

Kenya will next year submit its implementation report for the next Universal Periodic Review (UPR) review before the Human Rights Council in Geneva.

The country will also undergo a review before the UN Committee against Torture, known as CAT.

According to IMLU statistics, 822 people died from police bullets between 2013 and June 2018.

Of these, 58 happened between January and June this year.

According to the statistics, there are 44 cases of summary executions between January and June this year.

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On December 8, Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji called for a holistic approach to end extra-judicial killings and enforced disappearances.

READ: Police executions and torture undermines democracy, erodes confidence – DPP Haji

“Violation of human rights is a mischievous threat that has a wide range of effects on our society. It undermines democracy, the rule of law, it leads to fear and intimidation. It erodes public trust in governing institutions and allows organized crime, terrorism and other threats to human security to flourish,” he said during 25th-anniversary celebrations since IMLU was established.

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