DNA tests to help net rapists
Story by SAM KIPLAGAT
Some 100 DNA samples have been collected from rape victims of the
post-election violence to help net the suspects.
A Nairobi-based forensic company said that the samples had been
forwarded to an Australian company for analysis.
Mr Kinyanjui Murigi of Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) said
Tuesday that DNA Solutions Pty of Australia will do the analysis.
The samples, collected from victims at the Nairobi Women’s
Hospital during the six weeks of violence, will also help curb the
He said that an estimated 1,200 women and children were raped
during the post-election violence and many of them being victims
Curb rape cases
The crime expert said that CSI and DNA Solutions East Africa had
partnered with the Nairobi Women’s Hospital to curb rape cases in
Nearly 1,000 people have been killed in the violence which erupted
after President Kibaki was declared winner of the December 27
presidential election. The opposition Orange Democratic Movement
disputed the result, saying the election had been rigged.
Thousands of people have been maimed and more than 300,000
uprooted from their homes.
Most observers including those from the United States, European
Union, East African Community and locals said the tallying of the
presidential vote was flawed.
On Tuesday, Mr Murigi said that the DNA analysis would be
conducted for the next two to three months after which the
profiles of the suspects would have been known.
“It will take a bit long because the samples collected were not up
to the standards required and another reason being that most were
victims of gang rape. But after that, we will be able to narrow in
on individuals with the help of police,” he said.
The service, he said, was being conducted for free but the sponsor,
the world’s leading and largest private forensic facilities DNA
Solutions Pty (Australia) and Bode Technologies Group (USA) will
incur about Sh170 million for the exercise.
Mr Murigi said to analyse and profile DNA from a sexual assault
victim costs between Sh350,000 and Sh900,000. He cautioned that
even where a condom is used, what is known as Trace Evidence is
collected and analysed for DNA and it is about 90 per cent
“The ability of DNA testing to hold individuals accountable for
their actions has been widely demonstrated in other nations.
However, our joint efforts in Kenya represents the first time DNA
testing will be used to address the accountability issue during a
period of active unrest. By holding individuals accountable for
their actions not only are past crimes and violence addressed, but
also future violence could be deterred. This deterrent affect can
thus help reduce future violence and in doing so help support and
maintain stability,” he said.
Mr Murigi said that due to the complexity of these sexual offences,
high tech software will be used to identify and eliminate suspects
of these Mass Rape Incidences (MRIs). The said software includes
the ViCLAS (Violent Crime Linkage Analysis System) and CODIS (Combined
DNA Index System), which according to him, have never been used in