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Former assistant minister wants President Uhuru to apologise over teargassing of children

By BY RENSON MNYAMWEZI | Published Tue, January 20th 2015 at 12:22, Updated January 21st 2015 at 09:58 GMT +3

Kenya: Former Education Assistant Minister Calist Mwatela on Tuesday said President Uhuru should apologise to Kenyans over Monday's police attack on children  protesting the grabbing of Lang'ata Road primary School grounds in Nairobi.

The former Mwatate MP condemned the attack and described it as a crime and shame to the Jubilee Government.

"What happened on Monday is an act of crime which should not have happened in an independent country like Kenya. The incident is a shame to this country and the Head of State should apologise following teargassing of innocent pupils by the police," said Mr Mwatela.

"The President should say sorry to the children of this country. The police used extreme force on the children who were protesting over land grabbing," he noted.

Speaking to The Standard on phone from Nairobi, the former ODM legislator said police should never visit schools unless they are called to protect lives and property.

"What we saw was reminiscent of apartheid South Africa in 1976 where police with barking dogs unleashed brute force on the young people. Kenya is an independent country and police should not have displayed excessive force in total disregard of the law," he said.

"The police contravened the constitution that requires the government to protect children from any form of abuse. The Jubilee Government should come out clearly on the issue," said Mwatela.

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He said those who are responsible for the violence should be arrested and prosecuted. "The constitution protects children and those responsible for the illegal acts should immediately be put to full trial," said Mwatela.

He at the same time challenged the government to investigate how the school land ended up in the hands of a private developer.

"Kenyans need to know how the land changed hands. Those responsible for the scandal should also face the full force of the law," he said.


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