The Government has vowed to act with speed on the allegations surrounding controversial Pastor Paul Mackenzie, following revelations of a cult in Shakahola, Malindi, Kilifi County where 89 bodies have been exhumed as of Tuesday afternoon.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki who visited the site Tuesday, April 25, said they will clamp down on the violent extremism, adding that this is not the time to point accusatory fingers but act on the issue at hand.
"It is true that by the time the law caught up with him he had caused a lot of harm. But for the lives lost and the hurt and pain he has inflicted on the nation and humanity, he will pay dearly. They will pay with the most painful and severest punishment available. We do not expect that Mackenzie will get out of jail for the rest of his life," said Kindiki.
He at the same time stated that the government will soon tighten laws governing freedom of religion, as well open a formal inquiry into another region in Malindi that they also suspect has mass graves like Shakahola.
"What has happened here is the discovery of serious crimes against the law of Kenya and against international law. I know the country is in deep pain and shock. The rest of the world is in solidarity for what has happened here in Kilifi,” he added.
As of 3pm Tuesday, detectives had rescued three more people, bringing to 34 the total number of those rescued so far.
Earlier on, Kindiki and his team were holed up at the County Commissioner's office after visiting the Malindi Sub-County Hospital where the bodies have been transported, awaiting autopsy on Thursday as directed by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji.
Detectives on site told The Standard that the number of bodies exhumed is expected to rise exponentially considering the vastness of the site, and considering no one has a definite time frame on when the massacre started plus the burial.
Presently, detectives are combing the forest to try and rescue more followers of the Good News International Church who allegedly were instructed by Mackenzie to starve themselves to death in order to ‘meet Jesus.’