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IPOA: There is evidence police assaulted UoN students during riots

By Cyrus Ombati | April 20th 2016 at 15:23:19 GMT +0300

Smoke emerges from building housing SONU office at University of Nairobi. (Photo: Beverlyne Musili/Standard)

The Independent Policing Oversight Authority says it has found evidence showing police assaulted University of Nairobi students on April 2 during a protest against their union election results.

The authority said evidence shows that many students sustained serious injuries including bone fractures in the assault.

“The alleged assault actually occurred and that the same was perpetrated by police officers deployed on Anti-Riot Operation within the University,” said IPOA in a statement.

IPOA said it has not found conclusive evidence that rape actually took place.

“Available evidence shows that the assaulted students were not part of the skirmishes caused by rioting students and were instead pulled from the ADD building and halls of residence as they went about with revision for exams that were due.”

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The authority now wants to take action on the officers involved by either arresting those involved or through examination of available video footage.

The authority protested, despite persistent requests, it has to-date not received co-operation from both the University of Nairobi administration and police but investigations will continue and if necessary, criminal action will be pursued against any person obstructing the investigations.

“IPOA particularly expects full co-operation from the National Police Service in identifying the police officers involved in the assault.”

The authority also appealed to any member of the public including students who has any credible evidence on the incident to report to them. The university is closed and so far more than 200 students have been suspended over the riots.

The investigation follows the emergence of a video clip that showed a group of police officers whipping a group civilians believed to be students.

Police have already launched investigations on the source of the video and denied claims that officers molested students and argued it was shot probably in 2008.

The university students went on the rampage following the declaration of Babu Owino as the students' union president for a fourth term.

The rioting students burnt the union’s office and two hostels after they were informed the university had been closed indefinitely.



University of Nairobi Independent Policing Oversight Authority anti-riot police
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