Police want journalists John-Allan Namu and Mohammed Ali over Westgate story


Nairobi, Kenya: The Inspector General (IG) David Kimaiyo has disclosed plans to arrest individual journalists over alleged propaganda, in the wake of last month’s terror attack at Westgate Mall, Nairobi.

He was specific they are targeting KTN journalists who he accused of incitement and propaganda and cited police Acts and the Constitution which talks on limitations of freedom of speech.

“We are within the law and we are closely looking at individuals that might have committed offenses within the framework of their work that they will soon be apprehended and arraigned in court,” said Kimaiyo.

He added that objective criticism is acceptable but will not allow criticism that cannot be authenticated.

“I want to categorically come out very strongly that when you read article 33 of the Constitution it gives very clearly the limitations, even as one refers to article 34 on limitations in regards to freedom of expression and freedom of Media.”

He cautioned that nobody is above the law and while championing human rights is above the law, it should not be seen to over step that of others.

“We need not to incite Kenyans; we need not to distribute or maybe issue statements that can amount to hate speech or issue statements or report that affect the lives of other Kenyans,” he warned while in the company of CID director Ndegwa Muhoro who argued some journalists were out to subvert justice.

“Even as we do these things, we must work within the framework of the law. The law give everyone and guaranteed all but we must also be worry the rights of others and vice versa,”

“We must be loyal to the system and the government of the day,” he stressed.

He made the remarks a day after police launched investigations into the source footage obtained from the Westgate Mall that showed soldiers carrying items from the Nakumatt supermarket.

Nakumatt boss Atul Shah was summoned by police investigating the incident.

Mr Shah appeared before detectives at the Kilimani CID offices and left almost an hour later.

It is not clear if he recorded a statement. He was in the company of his lawyers.

A spokesman Alfred Ng’ang’a said Mr Shah was there to honour police summons in regard to the footage that appeared in local media.

Mr Shah was seen by the Kilimani CID boss George Ojuka who said they are investigating various crimes.

He left before another staff of the supermarket only identified as Maina was also summoned and questioned.

“There are complaints and we are trying to get answers on the issue,” said Ojuka.

Other sources said a number of journalists who aired the clips are also targeted for grilling and have so far been summoned.