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THE DEEP DIVE 9TH EDITION
We're looking into police brutality and public interest litigation in Kenya
On Friday the 13th of August, 2021, heart-breaking pictures were beamed across the world from one home in an otherwise little-known hamlet called Kianjokoma, in Embu county. Catherine Wanjira's anguished cries, and her husband, John Ndwiga's solemn gaze as they laid to rest their sons, Emmanuel and Benson if only briefly, had Kenyans looking at the same thing at the same time. Kenyans were confronted with the consequences of rampant violence perpetrated by Kenya's police force, typically against young men. A week before, Catherine had reminded her sons to come home before the nationwide 10 pm curfew set in. They didn't make it on time and fell into the hands of the police.
The Police's initial report to the public claimed that both young men, who died from severe trauma to their skulls, jumped out of a moving police pick up after being arrested for violating curfew restrictions. Reports from witnesses allege that both Emmanuel and Benson were bludgeoned to death. Emmanuel and Benson's killings are, unfortunately, no exceptions. Numerous organisations have continued to count, investigate and highlight deaths resulting from interactions with the police, but the killings continue.
In this edition, the second article of our election series, “Disclosure”, focuses on the important and often under-appreciated role that public interest litigation has played in shaping Kenya. Writer and researcher Morris “Owaah” Kiruga found that in the world of public interest litigation, there are some very unlikely heroes. Read on for his article.
One more thing...
We, at Africa Uncensored, have dedicated a lot of time and effort to covering the subject of police brutality in Kenya. It is a difficult subject to engage with, but one that we feel must be addressed. If you are new to the subject, here are a few stories and articles from our past work that may help with understanding the issue in Kenya:
1. Where are our children? - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xNVwSggVox4&list=PL8SSOIb3zzK-xY-LS4nBjOl0PKz0Hafdx
2. The Invisible line - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9lgUvVCnR54
3. Shot after curfew- The Death of "Vaite" https://pigafirimbi.africauncensored.online/the-death-of-vaite/
“The law is very clear!” - Kenya’s public interest litigation history
As Kenyans await the August 20th, 2021 judgment of an appeal on one of the more controversial attempts to change Kenya's constitution via the Building Bridges Initiative, we're taking a look at the impact that public interest litigation has had on resolving knotty legal questions in Kenya. In the second edition of our election series, "Disclosure", Morris Kiruga reminds us of petitions and cases in Kenya's legal history, and the sometimes unlikely heroes behind them. Read the article here!
EVERY PARENT’S WORST NIGHTMARE:
At the funeral of the Kianjokoma brothers
Photographer Brian Ing'ang'a's sobering photographs of the internment of brothers Benson Njiru Ndiwga (22) and Emmanuel Mutura Ndwiga were among the most shared photographs on Kenyan social media on Friday the 13th of August, 2021. Their killing sparked outrage in Kenya. Kenya's Directorate of Public Prosecutions has since ordered the arrest of the officers under investigation over the killings.
Photo Credit: Brian Ing’ang’a
Join The Newsroom| Edition 4
In our most recent edition of "Join the Newsroom", we had a conversation about police brutality in Kenya. This conversation took place in the wake of the killings of Emmanuel Mutura and Benson Ndwiga. Watch the video below for part of that discussion.
Control the Truth: Fake News and its role in “The making of a Tyrant”
This week's round-up of fact-checks is based on the Netflix series 'How to become a Tyrant'. Part of the key tenets in the making of a tyrant is in controlling the truth, as elaborated in episode 4, using Joseph Stalin's example.
In one of history's first photoshop, a photo of Stalin and his predecessor Vladimir Lenin was doctored to beguile the world of their fondness, making him appear closer to Lenin, hence more likable to the public. This is said to have spearheaded Stalin's rise through the ranks atop the Soviet Union leadership. Not minding that Lenin grew suspicious of him before he died, warning that Stalin would bring about division if he was to be allowed to lead. The doctored image won the people's hearts anyway. Stalin honed an ingenuity in controlling information that not only the people of the Soviet Union received but also the information that went outside their borders.
Such craftiness has been used in the Kenyan political scene, through sponsored hashtags that Africa Uncensored investigated through the 'Kenya's Keyboard Warriors' production. This trend is projected to rise as Kenya nears the elections period
Editorial Director: John-Allan Namu
Assignment Editor: Sam Munia
Social Media Manager: Cecilia Ashioya
Contributors: Linda Ngari and Brian Ing’ang’a
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