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Amnesty International Bronx chapter feted for campaign against police brutality

By Fredrick Obura | Published Mon, February 26th 2018 at 11:02, Updated February 26th 2018 at 11:13 GMT +3

NAIROBI, KENYA: The campaign against police brutality has earned Amnesty International Bronx chapter the Sister Laola Hironaka Award.

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The award which is in recorgnition of the inspiring and commitment to the promotion of human rights in community and protection of individuals was issued in Washington DC.

“For our case it was a campaign against police brutality in Kenya (following the report done by Amnesty international titled-KILL THOSE CRIMINALS), we had two campaigns- stop police brutality in Kenya and deferred action for childhood arrivals. The second was on immigration reform in America,” says Mr.Nick Ogutu, President of Amnesty International Bronx chapter New York.

The police brutality campaign involves letters to the United Nations, the Kenya Police Oversight Authority and President Uhuru Kenyatta.

According to Nick, so far 1235 letters have been signed and dispatched. There is also online petition-Stop police brutality in Kenya-and two rallies have been done at the United Nations  in New York.

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“We demand that victims of police killings have access to remedy and reparation and that perpetrators are held accountable. I have personally got threats for this campaign and my family now live in fear but I will not slow down, relent or give up until justice is seen to be served.” We have a great team of committed activists from around the world supporting the campaign.

The thousands of delegates from around the world who gathered in Washington DC, rose to their feet when Amnesty International Bronx chapter was called to receive the honorable recognition certificate.

“This is for the innocent Kenyans killed by the police last year," said Nancy.

Kenyan police often dismiss complaints of brutality, saying violent crime demands a violent response.

A case currently under investigation is that of baby Pendo killed last year August in battle between Kenyan police and protesters in Kisumu, west of the country.

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In August 2017, Pendo was lying in her mother’s arms at their one-room home in Kisumu when police burst in. The riot officers were rounding up suspected troublemakers after opponents of the government had disputed the election result that month.

The police fired teargas and repeatedly clubbed Pendo’s father, and in the melee an officer struck the baby on the head, said Lenzer Achieng, her mother. The police left without arresting anyone; days later, Pendo died from her injuries.

The baby’s death outraged a nation long hardened to police brutality. Even the national police chief, who has often publicly rejected allegations of police abuse, vowed to investigate.