Army Using Excessive Force in
The East African Standard (Nairobi)
1 February 2008
Police have shot dead 16 people and injured 58 others in four days
in Eldoret town.
Among those admitted in hospital with bullet wounds include three
Sudanese shot outside their homes at Kapsoya estate.
They were among 26 others rushed to the Moi Teaching and Referral
Hospital with bullets still lodged in their bodies, on Friday.
The victims were shot in protests sparked by the killing of
Ainamoi MP, David Kimutai Too by a police officer.
Mr Makui Maker, 37, a Sudanese was shot by a GSU officer.
"He was sitting in the compound when the officer with a red beret
burst open the gate, cocked his gun and shot him twice in the
stomach and left leg," said Emmanuel Sebit, a cousin who witnessed
When The Saturday Standard visited Maker's home, bloodstains
littered the compound, leaving a trail to his house.
Army officers have been accused of harassing residents and some of
them were caught on camera mistreating arrested youths.
The officers frog-marched and whipped the youths as they forced
them to remove illegal roadblocks along the Eldoret-Nairobi
They used sticks, gun butts and their boots to beat up the subdued
youths. The incident has sparked outrage from residents who have
accused the security officers of using excessive force.
"The action by the army has particularly angered us. How can they
deal with civilians that way? Are we at war?" asked Mzee Peter
Toroitich, a resident of Ngeria.
"I was walking home at 4pm to Maili Nne estate, when army and
police officers arrived and started shooting and I was shot on the
right leg," said Mr Mohammed Abdullahi, a businessman in Eldoret.
"They just alighted from their vehicles and started shooting," he
said, from his hospital bed.
Others at the hospital nursing bullet wounds were Mr Walter Korir,
Ms Peris Chepkosgey, Mr Fred Muhonja, Mr Peter Kagwi, Mr Benjamin
Kibet, Mr Reuben Ida, Mr Haroun Kipkirui, Mr James Bosirei, Mr
Simon Kiptarbei, Mr Samson Simiyu, Mr John Misoi, Mr Okemwa
Ramadhan and Mr Bernard Mariko.
"They came to our estate (Kapsoya) with one mission; to kill. I
was not part of the protesters but they shot me on my left
shoulder," said Misoi.
One of the victims who sought anonymity said he heard one of the
officers saying: "Nyinyi ndio munauwa watu Eldoret kama kuku, hata
nyinyi mutauwawa vile vile (You are the ones killing people like
chicken. You will also die the same way)."
Meanwhile, a senior officer in one of the police units based in
Eldoret, told The Saturday Standard that 200 police officers who
hail from Eldoret and neighbouring towns have been transferred. "We
have received the letters. They are basing our transfers to
re-organisation in the (police) force aimed at enhancing security,"
Separately, the North Rift branch of the Law Society of Kenya (LSK)
has condemned the use of excessive force by the police.
The members spoke as the visited the victims at the hospital on
"Security forces are behaving like bandits. It is unfortunate that
they are contributing to the breakdown of the law when they are
supposed to safeguard it," said lawyer Eric Ngeno, the branch
He said the Government should admit that its security apparatus
had been overwhelmed, instead of resorting to excessive force to