Former KTN investigative reporter-turned-politician Mohammed Ali has condemned the Friday killing of two suspected robbers by police officers in Eastleigh, Nairobi.
In a graphic video, which was widely shared on social media by Kenyans – a better part of last weekend –, a police officer dressed in plain clothes is seen wielding a pistol and shooting severally at an already badly injured man on the ground.
A section of Kenyans had taken to social media to condemn the act, with others approving the officers’ action.
In the footage shot from a balcony, one man is seen lying in a pool of blood on the street while 16-year-old Mohamed Khadar is confronted by three men, two of them holding pistols. Khadar was, a few minutes later, shot dead too. This was after several bullets fired by one of the officers tore through his body.
Despite city police boss Japheth Koome saying he has no apologies to make over the action taken by his officers, given the felled were “criminals”, Mohammed Ali does not concur.
“What happened in Eastleigh is very sad; I condemn it in strongest terms possible. I have never supported extra-judicial executions. The country should operate on premises of law; remember we are a sovereign state. No one – be it a law enforcer or licensed gun holder – should be allowed to shoot and kill another person unnecessarily, especially when there is a well laid procedure to follow when seeking justice,” Mohammed Ali told EDAILY.
“Every suspected offender has a right to defend himself in a court of law – and the rule of thumb states a suspect is innocent until proven guilty by a magistrate. This is not the first time I am publicly denouncing extra-judicial executions propagated by law enforcers. Do you remember lawyer Willie Kimani? He was killed, people demonstrated and nearly everyone moved on. What continues, thereafter, is the executions by the killer police officers.”
Completely disapproving Mr Koome, who defended the officers who executed the Eastleigh teenagers on suspicion of being members of the dreaded robbery gang Superpower, Mohamed Ali said: “Law enforcers should have taken those kids to court and justice be served. They were young and I would say: they probably would have changed had they been given room for rehabilitation.”
OF RUNNING FOR NYALI MP
In the interview, Mohammed Ali who has expressed interest in running for Nyali parliamentary seat in August 8 poll, says he left the big pen and plunged into politics to “save Nyali constituents who for long have been neglected – when it comes to service delivery and development – by the current and previous local leadership”.
Mohammed Ali’s early March, 2017 announcement that he would throw his hat in the ring for the Nyali MP seat met a section of Kenyans by surprise, with some taking to Twitter to ask what next for the famed investigative series Jicho Pevu.
Ali, who practiced journalism for 15 years, said that he would continue to execute the core aim of Jicho Pevu – fighting for truth and justice – adding that the main difference is that this time his arena will be the floor of the house.
“I am still a journalist wherever I go, whether I win or lose. If I win, God willing, I will be a journalist in Parliament. It doesn’t mean I should appear on TV and do Jicho Pevu every day. I can represent the voice of the voiceless people in Parliament,” he said.
“I WILL NAME, SHAME UNTOUCHABLE EVIL DOERS”
He went on to state that, should he win the seat, he would use parliamentary immunity to name and shame those behind ills in the country.
While a number of people have applauded this move, a section of the journalist’s followers have questioned why he is signing up to play the “dirty game” of politics.
Asked how he would respond to these individuals, Ali said: “Everyone is sitting in their own comfort zones, but every day they live complaining things are not good, business is not good, money is not flowing and there is a lot of corruption blaming the government every time. I have decided to leave my comfort zone and to stand up and be counted… instead of complaining Moha is going into politics and is going to be just like them.”
Ali is seeking to replace MP Hezron Awiti on an ODM ticket after Awiti set his eyes on the gubernatorial seat.
Mohammed Ali will, who is fighting for ODM ticket alongside Said Abdulla, will run against Wiper’s John Mcharo and Maendeleo Chap Chap’s Chrispus Waithaka in the bid for Nyali MP in the upcoming general poll.