A video circulating on social media has raised eyebrows as it shows a non-uniformed Kenyan policeman killing an unarmed suspected gang member at point-blank range in the streets of Eastleigh in the capital Nairobi.
The incident was confirmed to have occurred last Friday when the police pursued wanted gang members for killing police officers last month.
The graphic video showed a wounded man on the ground being shot several times and another lying in a pool of blood before the public who were cordoned off the scene.
“I buried a corporal from Kayole yesterday. The same gangsters shot dead another officer yesterday. Tell all the gangsters out there that when they kill an officer I am ruthless and they will get it from me,” Nairobi Police Commander Japheth Koome told the media after the video circulated all over social media.
Kenyan authorities should ensure that security officers respect the rights of accused persons and uphold international standards on use of force. The Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Monday called for an investigation into the killing while describing the statement by the Nairobi Police Commander as worrying.
“This is worrying because, as the most senior police officer in Nairobi, Koome will be key to accountability efforts and should be underscoring the importance of investigations and due process,” HRW said in a statement.
“Kenyan authorities should ensure that security officers respect the rights of accused persons and uphold international standards on use of force,” it added.
HRW welcomed a statement by the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Joseph Boinet who ordered for an investigation into the killings.
Kenyan police oversight agency, Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA), has commenced investigation into the killing.
Kenyans have expressed mixed reaction towards the incident with some supporting the violent clampdown on suspected criminals by the police while others described the incident as an extrajudicial killing.