The National Gender and Equality Commission (NGEC) has demanded a thorough investigation into circumstances surrounding the teargassing of school children at Kihumbini Primary School in Kangemi, Nairobi.
In a press statement on Thursday, July 13, the Commission condemned the act and urged the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA) to conduct investigations and ensure that those responsible are apprehended.
"The National Gender and Equality Commission (NGEC) urgently calls for a thorough and independent investigation into the circumstances that led to the use of teargas inside a school during the anti-government protests organized by the Azimio la Umoja on Wednesday, July 12," said Joyce Mutinda, Chairperson of the Commission.
"IPOA must initiate this inquiry and ensure that those responsible for such reprehensible actions are held accountable. The safety and well-being of our children must never be compromised under any circumstances, and justice must prevail for the affected pupils, their teachers, and their families," the commission said.
The incident resulted in over fifty pupils, aged between ten and fifteen, being admitted to the Eagle Nursing Home clinic in Kangemi after police officers lodged teargas in their classroom.
According to Nairobi Police boss Adamson Bungei, the teargas may have entered the classroom as police officers attempted to disperse protesters who had gathered near the school.
The Commission, however, emphasizes that while the constitution allows Kenyans to protest and the police to carry out their duties, the protection of human rights and vulnerable groups, including children, should be a priority during such protests.