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NGO says Tsavo Park decomposing bodies result of extra-judicial killings, blame police force

COUNTIES
By Stephen Nzioka | March 27th 2019

A Human rights organization has blamed police officers over a shocking incident where six naked bodies were found on Tuesday dumped and decomposing in Kanga area, Tsavo West National Park some 15 kilometers from Mtito-Andei Town along Mombasa-Nairobi highway

 

They termed this as extra-judicial killing that might be planned and executed by police officers mostly from the coast region and the bodies ferried there for wild animals to feed on.

Although they didn’t specifically link any police unit to the killings, they generally ruled that extra-judicial killings and forced disappearances were on rise in the coastal counties and North Eastern region.

“We highly suspect that these people were killed by police agents. Kenyan police killed them,” said Francis Auma, Rapid Response Officer, Muslim for Human Rights (Muhuri).

On Tuesday around 1:30pm, as per police report entered in Mtito-Andei police station under OB 11/26/3/2019 by Kenya wildlife services (KWS) rangers, while on their routine patrols in the park they found the six bodies.

According to police report, the rangers manning the park were led to the bodies by foul smell.

“Rangers encountered a foul smell within the national park at Kanga area. Upon searching the area, they discovered six male African adult bodies which were decomposed and naked a kilometer off the main Mombasa-Nairobi Highway,” read part of the police report.

The killing prompted officers from Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), Mtito-Andei to visit the scene where they found the bodies which were thrown separately from each other.

The report also indicated that the people could have been killed elsewhere and bodies dumped at the park something that Muhuri says is the true picture as per what has happened before.

However, no identification documents were found at the scene. Police report from Mtito-Andei police station had contradictions on how many bodies were discovered, and which mortuary they were taken to. Police in their report said that they collected six bodies but an inside source said ten bodies were collected at the scene.

Kibwezi police boss Ben Chagulo was reached for a comment flatly refused to speak on several instances.

Makueni County Commissioner Maalim Mohammed couldn’t utter a word. He strictly wanted KWS headquarters to give a statement on the matter. 

Paul Masela, KWS communication officer confirmed only six bodies found in the park.

Spot check by The Standard at Makindu hospital mortuary where police claimed they had taken the bodies found none. However, our sources confirmed that the bodies were lying in the City mortuary-Nairobi due to their current state, and lack of mortuary space at Makindu which holds only 14 bodies.  

The organization said that in the recent past bodies of Muslim clerics and other government critics were found dumped at the same place days after their disappearances and the government has never dug deeper into the cause of their deaths.

“Why always Tsavo? At the same area is where Meshack Yebeil, International Criminal Court (ICC) witness following 2007 post-election violence body was found dumped and also the body of the slain Muslim cleric Samir Khan among other bodies” said Auma.

In a past shocking incident, at the same Kanga area, five bodies were found there and when they were collected and taken to Makindu mortuary one person was found to be alive. He was taken back to the wards for treatment but in a bizarre incident armed men dashed in and shot him dead.

The human rights organization now wants an inquest to be opened to determine the causes of the present, and past deaths.

On statistics as relayed by Muhuri, since 2017 to date, 40 forced disappearances have been reported in the coast region alone while since January to March 13 people have been reported missing in Garrisa County. The disappearances have been linked to police.

Following the deaths, we learnt of Abdi Godana Dida who reported the disappearance of his brother. By the time of going to press he was pitching tent at the City mortuary waiting to identify whether his brother was among those dead. 

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