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Polytechnic officials protest alleged police harassment

By Harold Odhiambo | April 30th 2020

The principal of Kabete National Polytechnic Charles Akach is pleading for justice over alleged illegal detention and harassment of two members of his staff by police officers in Kisumu.

The staff were on an official assignment before their vehicle was impounded by police officers early this week over claims that the vehicle had been stolen.

 Edward Maranga, the institution’s security officer and Simon Nkangula are now reading foul play in their arrest and claim some people could have been after their lives.

On Wednesday, the duo recorded statements over the incident at Kabete Police Station under OB number OB NO 47.

They claim that during the incident which occurred on Monday this week, officers from Kisumu Police Station led by the deputy OCS Dan Kibore towed their vehicle to the station and accused them of theft.

However, no charges were preferred against them with the vehicle released after several hours of grilling and alleged harassment.

“We had all the required travel documents including the authorisation from the principal and had passed all the road blocks in peace before the incident in Kisumu,” said Maranga.

He claimed that he was shocked when more than three police cars blocked their car and pointed guns at them while threatening to shoot them.

The officer claimed that he was informed by the officers that the vehicle belonging to the institution had been stolen.

“They commandeered our vehicle to the station and demanded to know who gave us the vehicle. I informed them that I was permitted by the principal who signed our work ticket,” said Maranga.

The institution’s environment officer recounted the painful ordeal they went through at the hands of the officers despite having all the necessary documents.

According to Nkarunga, they were escorted under tight security with guns pointed at them.

“I had lost my father and the institution authorized me to use the vehicle to attend the funeral. The security officer was also included by the institution to join me,” said Nkarunga.

On Thursday, the principal of the institution described the incident as unfortunate and urged officers to investigate the issue and bring justice to his staffs.

“I authorized them and even signed their work ticket. I was surprised when officers called me to inform me that they had received reports that the vehicle had been stolen,” said Akach.

Akach noted that the officers failed to inform them who made the report about the theft.

The deputy OCS, however, claimed that the matter had been resolved internally and declined to divulge into the controversies surrounding the arrest.

On Thursday, the Deputy Sub-County Police Commander Benard Ayoo said that they had launched investigations into the matter.

"We received information that the vehicle was travelling without a permit but we checked their documents and confirmed them. We are investigating the person who sent the message," said the officer.

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