‘962 Were Sprayed With Bullets’ Waki Reports Paints A Sad Picture of Post Election Violence

KEY POINTS:

  • Philip Waki led Commission painted a sad picture on its report about the 2007/2008 Post election violence with police being main perpetrators.
  • The Waki commission revealed that a total of 962 people were sprayed with bullets by the police, out of whom 405 died. 
  • On Monday, Director of Criminal Investigations met some victims of the violence, mainly survivors of the Kiambaa church arson.

Philip Waki led Commission painted a sad picture on its report about the 2007/2008 Post election violence with police being main perpetrators.

The Waki commission revealed that a total of 962 people were sprayed with bullets by the police, out of whom 405 died.

“The commission has received no evidence to suggest that where gunshots were recorded as the cause of death or injury, it was a source other than the police,” the Waki commission concluded in the report.

On Monday, Director of Criminal Investigations met some victims of the violence, mainly survivors of the Kiambaa church arson.

According to the report, the facts clearly demystified claims that the post-election violence was a citizen-on-citizen violence but instead validated reports that security officers accounted for a good part of the bloodshed.

The evidence received by the commission was that in Nyanza and Western provinces, the main strongholds of ODM leader Raila Odinga, there were low levels of fatalities as a result of citizen-on-citizen violence.

“It then follows that police shot and killed a large number of people in these two provinces,” the report noted.

Rift Valley region, the epicentre of the violence recorded 194 deaths from gunshots while Nyanza had 107 deaths from the barrel of the gun.

Rift Valley had 744 deaths of the total deaths recorded during the PEV while Nyanza had 134 deaths.

In terms of the ethnicity of people who were killed, 278 were Luo, 268 Kikuyu, 158 Kalenjin and 163 Luyha, among others.

Evidence from a pathologist revealed that of the 50 people shot by police in Kisumu, 30 were shot from behind and a further nine from the side.

Three of the deceased were under the age of 14 years .

The Waki report found out that while poll violence in the then Western province was not given much attention, areas such as Mumias, Vihiga ,Webuye and Kakamega were affected.

It says the violence that started in January 2008 saw a total of 98 people in the region lose their lives as a result of police brutality, with a further 129 people being treated in hospitals and medical centres.

“Of those who were killed no less than three quarters (74) were found to have died as a result of gunshot wounds,” the report says.

In Kakamega , the report says, 26 of 31 people died as a result of gunshots while in Mumias 11 of 12, Busia eight of nine, Bungoma all seven, Vihiga 15 of 18 deaths occurred as a result of gunshots.

In Webuye district seven of 21 deaths were due to gunshots. “The pattern of injuries and their causes were similar in that virtually all injuries in Kakamega, Mumias and Vihiga were caused by gunshots,” the report said.

In Nairobi, the commission found that of the 125 people who lost their lives during the clashes, 23 were as a result of gunshot wounds.

Another 61 of 342 who were admitted to hospital nursed gunshot wounds.

The report fingered the police for using excess force against protesters in the informal settlement such as Kibera and Mathare in Nairobi.

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The investigations identified the extensive use of tear gas and firearms in support of what appeared to be a tactic to keep citizens inside the informal settlement areas. At the Coast, five people were shot and killed.

“In terms of preparedness for dealing with the post-election violence, the police were simply too far off the mark,” the Waki report concluded.

The police were heavily indicted for sexually abusing women and children especially in the informal settlements.

According to the report, sexual violence took the form of gang and individual rapes, many of which were ethnically driven.

“The commission found out that the perpetrators of sexual violence were not just ordinary citizens, neighbours and ordinary gang members but also significant numbers of the security forces,” the report said.

The perpetrators included members of the General Service Unit, the regular police and the Administration Police.

Between 800-900 women and children were sexually abused.

RELATED POST: Ruto Breaks Silence Over Reopening Of Post Election Violence Cases

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