Home Media Centre Press Releases
Written by KHRC    Friday, 10 October 2014 11:47   
‘SHOOT TO KILL’?

Should the police “shoot to kill” suspected criminals to counter the high security threats in the country?

In the face of increased insecurity in the country over the recent months resulting in loss of many innocent lives, physical and emotional trauma among other impacts, the National Police Service (NPS) has devised strategies to combat crime. Whereas most of these strategies are lawful and acceptable, our attention has been drawn to directives issued by senior police officers ordering police officers to ‘shoot-to-kill’ suspected criminals. Appreciating the challenging task facing our security forces in guaranteeing security in the face of violent criminality especially terror-related and other related crimes police will inevitably be required to use force on occasion, and sometimes lethal force in order to protect life.

It is however important for police officers in particular and Kenyans in general to understand the circumstances under which a police officer is legally allowed to use force and firearms (lethal) in executing his/her duty.

When should police officers use lethal force or firearms while combating crime?

Section 1 Part A of the Sixth Schedule of the National Police Service Act 2011 sets out the rules and procedures on use of force and firearms by police officers. The schedule states that:

  1. A police officer shall always attempt to use non-violent means first and lethal force may only be employed when non-violent means are ineffective or without any promise of achieving the intended result
  1. The force used shall be proportional to the objective to be achieved, the seriousness of the offence, and the resistance of the person against whom it is used, and only to the extent necessary while adhering to the provisions of the law and the Standing Orders.
  1. Firearms or lethal force may only be used when less extreme means are inadequate and for the following purposes—

ü Saving or protecting the life of the officer or other person; and

ü In self-defense or in defence of other person against imminent threat of life or serious injury.

  1. An officer intending to use firearms shall identify themselves and give clear warning of their intention to use firearms, with sufficient time for the warning to be observed, except;

ü where doing so would place the officer or other person at risk of death or serious harm; or

ü If it would be clearly inappropriate or pointless in the circumstances

  1. A police officer shall make every effort to avoid the use of firearms, especially against children.

Note: Any use of firearms outside the ambit of the instances provided above amounts to unlawful use of firearms and in case of deaths, extrajudicial executions.

WHAT IS AN EXTRAJUDICIAL EXECUTION?

Extra-Judicial Executions are planned executions committed by governments or government-backed agents with a total lack of regard for due process of law and/or judicial procedure as protected in the law. Kenya is a party to both the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights. International law prohibits the “arbitrary deprivation of life”, and obligates governments to both “respect and ensure” the right to life.

Article 238(2) of the Constitution of Kenya, states that national security shall be promoted and guaranteed in accordance with the principle of compliance with the law and with the utmost respect for the rule of law, democracy, human rights and fundamental freedoms. In common parlance the police while implementing their mandate should uphold the principles set under the bill of rights where the right to life is protected under article 26(2) that states that a person shall not be deprived of the right to life intentionally, except to the extent authorized by this constitution or other written law 

WHAT ARE THE POSSIBLE EFFECTS OF THE SHOOT TO KILL ORDERS?

Killing of innocent people: The laws of Kenya assert that a person is innocent until proven guilty by a court of law. Any shoot to kill order would undermine this presumption and most critically may result in the killings of innocent persons as has been evidenced and documented variously in reports and courts judgments.

Proliferation of more militarized criminal gangs: Responding to crime and insecurity by using force would most likely see the proliferation of more militarized criminal gangs, increased gang wars and infiltration of more sophisticated illegal arms in the country. This is because such action would alienate and threaten public relations and hence a reluctance by members to share crucial information they may be having. Further the gangs would employ retaliation tactics as common in a state where the rule of law is violated.

Police officers individual liability: Police officers who follow directives on use of force not in line with the abovementioned provisions shall face individual disciplinary action or prosecution for unlawful use of force where it amounts to a criminal offence despite the fact that they were acting pursuant to a purported superior order.

WHAT SHOULD YOU DO IN CASE YOU ARE A WITNESS TO EXTRA JUDICIAL EXECUTIONS?

You are legally and morally obligated for the sake of the victims, community and the betterment of policing, to make a statement to the following institutions with clear details about the incident covering noting that this information will be upheld in utmost confidentiality:

  • The date and the time ofthe incident
  • The police service number of the officer(s) if displayed, name if known, gender etc
  • In case of a vehicle, the registration number and any other details on the vehicle
  • Witnesses to the incident if any
  • Any other details.

ALL INFORMATION RECEIVED WILL BE TREATED AS CONFIDENTIAL.

Name Of Institution

Telephone Numbers

Email Address

Physical Address

Independent Policng Oversight Authority (Ipoa)

0725 327 289

020 4906000

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Ack Garden Annex 2nd Floor Along 1st Ngong Avenue

Kenya National Commission On Human Rights

0724 256 448

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Cvs Palza, Kasuku Lane Off Lenana Road

Internal Affairs Unit

020 2221969

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Director Internal Affairs Unit Jogoo House "A" Ground Floor,West Wing

P.O Box
44249-00100 Nairobi

Police Reforms Working Group

0734520500

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

scroll back to top
Last Updated ( Friday, 10 October 2014 12:54 )
 
Written by KHRC    Tuesday, 30 September 2014 06:43   
Open letter to the President

 

“NO STONE WILL BE LEFT UNTURNED”: FOR HOW LONG MR PRESIDENT?

Mr. President,

As you are well aware, it has been one year since terrorists attacked and mercilessly took away the lives of at least sixty seven (67) persons during the Westgate Mall terror attack. It is four and half months since criminal gangs unleashed untold terror on thousands of Kenyans and left eighty (80) people dead in Mpeketoni. It has been one year and five months since criminal gangs terrorized the residents of Bungoma and Busia, killing more than fifty (50) people and seriously injuring more than one hundred (100) Kenyans. It has been four months since inter-clan wars in Mandera claimed the lives of over forty three (43) people, left hundreds injured and over one hundred thousand displaced.

In the Northern and Rift regions in Kenya especially Turkana, Wajir, Mandera, Baringo insecurity soars with at least over one hundred and twenty (120) people dead, more than ninety five (95) seriously injured and not less than thirteen thousand five hundred and thirty six (13,536) left displaced since 29 June, 2013. In addition to these insecurity statistics we have more unmentioned incidents in Nairobi, Mombasa, Tana River, Eldoret among many more. Worse still is the fact that even security agents trained to protect civilians have themselves become victims of insecurity. Beyond losing people beloved to them, the survivors of the attacks -men, women, children civilians and security agents - suffer post-traumatic stress disorders and other forms of social distress.

 

Join The Campaign: Read more of the Petition

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

scroll back to top
Last Updated ( Friday, 10 October 2014 12:59 )
 
Written by KHRC    Monday, 15 September 2014 13:01   
CSOs Statement on EAC-EU Economic Partnerships Agreement

We, the civil society organizations, farmers associations, workers, FAIRTRADE gathered here today, wish to express our deep fears and concerns on the nature and design of the on-going negotiations to conclude an Economic Partnerships Agreement (EPA) between the East African Community and the European Union (EU). We wish to raise our voices to the European Union and government negotiators that:


1.  We are deeply concerned about the asymmetrical nature of the EPA negotiations thus far. Studies show that EAC’s  51.3% of tariff lines/products where there is current local production will be put at risk, perhaps even damaged (1,100 tariff lines out of 2,144) as these are lines where liberalization will take place and the EU is more competitive on these lines than the EAC. Taking into account potential future production (tariff lines where there is no current production), 2,366 tariff lines will be liberalized making the possibility of having future production in these products questionable. In total, 68.8% of all tariff lines or products could be put at risk (current and future production).

2.  We further express concern with regard to the delays in agreeing the European Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the European Union and the East Africa Community (EAC). In particular, we wish to alert you to the potentially severe impact on the lives of 500,000 people dependent on the Kenyan floriculture business. Fair-trade and Kenya flower council works with large numbers of cut flower producers in Kenya, who largely supply European retailers. More than 33 out of 61 Fairtrade certified cut flower producers are Kenyan. Together, they employ over 32,000 workers. Country wide, the Kenyan Flower Council have estimated that over 500,000 people including 90,000 direct flower farm employees depend on the floriculture industry for their livelihoods. It is the second largest agricultural foreign exchange for Kenya valued at more than $250 million a year.

3.  Small-scale farmers and producers are alarmed by the agricultural subsidies provided in the EU; and the weak safeguards provided for in the EPAs. The EU has rejected the discussion of its subsidies in the EPAs on the grounds that this is a WTO issue. However, we argue that the issue of subsidies has not been addressed in the WTO as  developed countries, including the EU have failed to live up to what was agreed on during the WTO Hong Kong Ministerial to eliminate export and trade distorting subsidies by 2013.

4.  We further note that the programme is the most expensive scheme accounting for more than 40% of its annual budget and one of the most controversial. In 2013 the budget for direct farm payments (subsidies) and rural development-the twin “pillars” of Comprehensive Agricultural Policy–is 57.5 Billion Euros (Euros 49bn), out of a total budget of 132.8 billion euros (that is 43% of the total). Most of the CAP budget is direct payments to farmers.

5. There is ample evidence to show that agricultural subsidies in the EU have led to dumping of agricultural products with far reaching implication on Africa’s agricultural production and agro-processing.EU is spending way too much on subsidies when agriculture creates just 1.6% of EU GDP and employs only 5% of EU populations

6.  We note that EAC having been in these negotiations since 2007, the European Union’s rigid and unilateral deadline to Conclude EPAs is not a desirable way in achieving the desired results. The conclusion of any Free Trade Agreement like EPA must take into account the interests and address the concerns of both parties, and not through timeframes. Therefore, we urge the EU to show necessary flexibility in the negotiations process, respecting the different levels of development of each EAC country.

7.  We urge the EAC negotiators should therefore continue pushing for an extension of the Regulation 1528/2007 to such a period where the negotiations have been concluded or an alternative trade arrangement has been initiated. It should be appreciated that the difficult to conclude these talks are not only on the shoulders of EAC countries, but also due to rigidity on the side of the EU.

8.  We emphasize that trade policy instruments such as export taxes are an integral part of East African industrialization since they promote value addition, protects infant industries and improves agricultural productivity. We further note that export taxes remain very critical after the discovery of oil, natural gas and other minerals. In fact, Kenya’s accession agreement to WTO does not prohibit it from imposing export taxes. We therefore seek an agreement that protects the livelihoods of millions of smallholder farmers and producers in the EAC region.

9. Civil society organizations, workers and Smallholder farmers argue that negotiators and the private sector have focused extensively on commercial interests without focusing on major aspects of labor, standards, human rights, environment and climate change as well as development as it was initially envisaged by the Cotonou Partnerships Agreement. The cost of signing EPA is much higher than the benefits. Kenya stands to lose USD 193.2 million and gain just about USD 87.1 million upon signing an EPA.

10. We therefore call upon the international trading partners to extend duty free quota free treatment to Least Developed Countries and non-Least Developed countries in Africa. If this is enacted, a country like Kenya which is in a least developed region will have the same trade regime with her Least Developed Counterparts of Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda and Tanzania.

11.  We note with concern that the tariffs that will be imposed will increase the price of cut flowers considerably. This extra cost must either be borne by producers themselves, or by European traders and major retailers. The imposition of tariffs therefore poses a high risk of trade moving away from Kenyan sourcing into countries which are retaining preferential market access into the EU, such as Ethiopia as a Least Developed Country. The imposition of tariffs is an unacceptable price for Fairtrade farmers and workers to bear. Fairtrade works to alleviate poverty through establishing fair trading relationships between European businesses and Kenyan producers. Through this relationship flower workers and their communities have seen improved healthcare, income, education, and reduced poverty. We now fear that the work of many years will be undermined.

12. We therefore ask the EU to extend the current tariff regime beyond 1 October 2014, to allow negotiations to be successfully concluded. Should agreement not be reached, we ask you to ensure that the moves to approve the Commission Regulation granting GSP preferences to Kenya are successfully concluded in time for 1 October 2014. We urge the European Commission to act with the utmost responsibility and awareness of the impact their decisions will have on the lives of hundreds of thousands of workers in Kenya’s floriculture industry, and with due regard to its high level commitments to poverty reduction”


 13.We retaliate that the 1st October deadline should not be a basis upon which the talks should be based on but on how to conclude the talks. In order to have a “win-win” outcome of negotiations, then the EU must be willing to support the development pillar that addresses supply side constraints. In addition, Special and differential treatment has to be part and parcel of the developmental EPA. We therefore urge the EU to extend the waiver with tariff preferences for Kenyan horticultural produce including flowers, beyond 1st October until the outstanding issues between the EU and EAC are finalized.scroll back to top
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 16 September 2014 10:01 )
 
Written by KHRC    Monday, 25 August 2014 13:19   
African States: Reject Immunity for Leaders


For Immediate Release


African States: Reject Immunity for Leaders
141 Groups in 40 Countries Speak Out


(Johannesburg, August 25, 2014) – African countries should reject immunity for sitting leaders for grave crimes before the African Court for Justice and Human Rights, 141 organizations said today in a declaration<https://www.hrw.org/news/2014/08/22/call-african-states-reject-immunity-serious-crimes-african-civil-society-organisatio> in advance of an African Union meeting in Nairobi. The organizations include
both African groups and international groups and have a presence in 40 African countries.
The African Union (AU) Office of the Legal Counsel is convening a meeting in Nairobi on August 25 and 26, 2014, with government officials of AU member countries in East Africa to promote ratification of AU treaties. Discussions, which will take place at the Hilton Hotel, are expected to include a newly adopted protocol to extend the African Court’s jurisdiction to trials of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity, while providing immunity for sitting leaders and other senior officials. The protocol to expand the authority of the African Court was adopted at the 23rd African Union summit, in Malabo in June.


“The immunity provision is a regrettable departure from the AU’s Constitutive Act, which rejects impunity under article 4,” said George Kegoro, executive director of theInternational Commission of Jurists-Kenya<http://www.icj-kenya.org/>. “Immunity takes away the prospect that victims can access justice at the African court when leaders commit atrocities. African states should take a clear stand opposing this immunity.”

The adopted Protocol on Amendments to the Protocol on the Statute of the African Court of Justice and Human Rights<http://legal.au.int/en/content/press-conference-au-summit-decision-protocol-african-court-human-and-peoples-rights>
is the first legal instrument to extend a regional court’s authority to criminal jurisdiction over genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. The protocol also covers 11 additional crimes and notably provides for an independent defense office.


But Article 46A bis of the amendments provides immunity for sitting leaders, stating: “No charges shall be commenced or continued…against any serving African Union Head of State or Government, or anybody acting or entitled to act in such capacity, or other senior state officials based on their functions, during their tenure of office.”

The statutes of international and hybrid international-national war crimes tribunals reject exemptions on the basis of official capacity. Other international conventions, including the Convention against Torture, the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of \ Genocide, and the Geneva Conventions of 1949, recognize the crucial importance of accountability for serious crimes.

“Granting immunity to sitting officials is retrogressive, and risks giving leaders license to commit crimes,” and Timothy Mtambo executive director at Malawi’s Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation. “Immunity also risks encouraging those accused of the crimes to cling to their positions to avoid facing the law.”


Some African countries like Benin, Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, and South Africa rule out immunity for sitting officials for serious crimes under their national laws, the groups said.

This text of the group declaration was drafted by Malawi’s Center for Human Rights and Rehabilitation, with input from several African organizations and international organizations with a presence in Africa.


“Instead of retreating from important achievements to limit impunity, advance the rule of law, and promote respect for human rights, African governments should remain steadfast in supporting justice for victims of the worst crimes by rejecting immunity before\ the African Court,” said Angela Mudukuti, international criminal justice project lawyer at the Southern Africa Litigation Centre<http://www.southernafricalitigationcentre.org/>.


To read the declaration,please visit:

https://www.hrw.org/news/2014/08/22/call-african-states-reject-immunity-serious-crimes-african-civil-society-organisatio


To see other group initiatives by these organizations, please visit:


http://www.icj-kenya.org/index.php/media-centre/press-releases/20-press-statement/598-letter-to-the-justice-ministers-and-attorneys-general-of-the-african-on-immunity-of-heads-of-states


http://www.southernafricalitigationcentre.org/2013/11/18/salc-in-the-news-icc-africa-should-reject-free-pass-for-leaders/


http://www.issafrica.org/uploads/African-civil-society-letter-to-AU-on-ICC-withdrawal-Oct-2013.pdf


For more information, please contact:
In Accra, for Media Foundation for West Africa, Sulemana Braimah (English): +233-302-242-470; or +233-244-520-243;
or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it '; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text91574 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >


In Dakar, for Rencontre
Africaine pour la Défense des Droits de l’Homme, Aboubacry Mbodji (French):
+221-777-408-683; or
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

In Johannesburg, for Human Rights Watch, Tiseke Kasambala (English): +27-110-622-852; or +27-792-205-254;
or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <https://mail.hrw.org/owa/redir.aspx?C=62bfcf6eb34e4416a6066327f155ddaf&URL=mailto%3Akasambt%40hrw.org>


In Johannesburg, for Southern Africa Litigation Centre, Angela Mudukuti (English): +27-767-623-869; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it '; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text68896 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >


In Kampala, for Foundation for Human Rights Initiative (English), Penny Mbabazi Atuhaire: +256-777-753-566;
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

In Kampala, for Ugandan Coalition for the ICC, Patricia Bako (English): +256-785-138-755; or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >


In Kigali, for Human Rights First Rwanda Association, Louis Busingye (English): +250784252917; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it '; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text1652 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >


In Lilongwe, for Center for Human Rights and Rehabilitation, Timothy Mtambo (English): +265-992-166-191; or
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

In Nairobi, for Kenya section of the International Commission of Jurists, Stella Ndirangu (English):
+254-20-208-4836/8; or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >


In Pretoria, for the International Crime in Africa Programme, Institute for Security Studies, Jemima
Njeri (English): +27-832-346-566; or +27-123-469-500; or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <https://mail.hrw.org/owa/redir.aspx?C=62bfcf6eb34e4416a6066327f155ddaf&URL=mailto%3Ajnjeri%40issafrica.org>





scroll back to top
Last Updated ( Monday, 25 August 2014 13:36 )
 
  • «
  •  Start 
  •  Prev 
  •  1 
  •  2 
  •  3 
  •  4 
  •  5 
  •  6 
  •  7 
  •  8 
  •  9 
  •  10 
  •  Next 
  •  End 
  • »


Page 1 of 13