"Human Rights Organizations Slam Mudavadi's Denial of Police Brutality"

Prime CS Musalia Mudavadi

Prime Cabinet Secretary and Cabinet Secretary for Foreign and Diaspora Affairs Musalia Mudavadi's statement denying police brutality in Kenya is considered shameful and disconnected from reality by a group of human rights organizations under the Missing Voices Coalition.

The coalition stated that they have documented and verified numerous cases of police killings and enforced disappearances, highlighting a systemic issue that requires urgent attention. "Last year alone, we recorded 125 cases of police killings and 10 enforced disappearances. The year before, we had a whopping 153 reported cases. These data contradict Mudavadi’s assertion on an international platform," said the group via their official handle.

On February 14, 2023, Mudavadi defended Kenya’s human rights record and the integrity of the police service during the 44th ordinary session of the African Union’s Executive Council of Foreign Affairs Ministers in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Responding to an assertion by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, Mudavadi stated that police brutality and the use of excessive force do not occur in Kenya. He further claimed that citizens freely report any allegations of police impunity to the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA). "This body investigates such impunity if any and holds individual police officers accountable, including through prosecution," Mudavadi said.

In response to Mudavadi's assertions, Missing Voices argued that the notion that police brutality doesn’t occur in Kenya dismisses the experiences of individuals and communities who have suffered at the hands of law enforcement. "In the last five years, we have recorded at least 810 cases of police killings. More than 90 percent of these cases have not been prosecuted," the group noted. "It’s essential to acknowledge these injustices and work towards meaningful solutions. Denial of police brutality only perpetuates a culture of impunity and undermines efforts to build trust between the police and the public. Addressing this issue requires transparency, accountability, and a commitment to upholding human rights."

Last week, Afrobarometer, a non-partisan survey research network on the views of ordinary Africans to inform development and policy decision-making, released a report that shed light on the unprofessional conduct of the Kenyan police force. The report indicated police brutality, excessive force, and lack of accountability. Kenya topped the list of 39 countries, with 66 percent of those interviewed stating they believe the Kenyan police are unprofessional in discharging their duties.