After the unusual Madaraka Day celebrations yesterday (1.06.2020), the police have been caught up in yet another case of police brutality, claiming a life of homeless man in Mathare.
According to chatter on the social media platform Twitter, a man identified as Vaite was killed yesterday after local police tried to enforce the curfew rules in Mathare. Shooting him dead, they claimed yet another life; in the name of enforcing government restrictions on non-essential travel past 7 pm. Vaite as he was fondly known by locals, worked as a loader and farrier of goods in the bustling Marikiti Market.
This extreme use of force is not the first instance the local police force has taken liberties with human life. And now more than ever, more Kenyans and standing up for the unfortunate souls who fall victim to police brutality.
Various public figures including Human Rights activist and author Boniface Mwangi, comedian Mumalwah, TikTok queen Azziad Nasenya, as well as TV presenter Willis Raburu have all expressed their sadness over the ever-growing number of police brutality cases. One tweep noted, “Sometimes one wonders where is the best place to live when they’re subjected to police brutality in a foreign country. In Kenya where one ought to think is safest to be, it’s even WORSE. A black man has turned out to be a black man’s ENEMY.”
‘Voices of Kibera’ rapper Octopizzo also staged protests today (2.06.2020) in front of the U.S Embassy premises in Gigiri to bring attention to the extrajudicial killings, that continue to go unnoticed.
The now trending hashtag #JusticeForVaite is urging for relevant authorities to take action against the policemen involved in yesterday’s events, while agitating for a complete overhaul of the task force, putting police reforms at the forefront.
As the nation faces an increase in killings carried out by the police, the force charged to protect and serve, some have noted that the Coronavirus has only made life more difficult for nationals, with the government giving little to no consideration for its people.
As temperatures continue to rise over the need for radical police reforms, it seems that Kenyans might just pull together to stir up change for the victims, and for the sake of a better tomorrow.