Baby among 24 killed in Kenya poll protests

Saturday August 19 2017

A six-month-old baby is among the casualties of post-election protests in Kenya, with police being accused of using excessive force to maintain law and order in opposition strongholds.

Opposition supporters took to the streets to protest the declaration of President Uhuru Kenyatta as the winner of the presidential election. However, police were deployed and were accused of using live bullets to disperse crowds.

READ: Gunshots, protests in Kenya opposition strongholds

State-funded human-rights watchdog — Kenya National Commission on Human Rights — said 24 people were killed during the protests that broke out on August 11, while police put the official death toll at six. They claimed the casualties were mostly criminals on a looting spree.

Six-month-old Samantha Pendo sustained severe head injuries during a police raid in her home. She died while on a life support machine at Aga Khan Hospital in Kisumu. A post-mortem report showed that she died from internal bleeding.

In Mathare slums in Nairobi, residents said a nine-year old girl was killed by a stray bullet when police moved into the area to contain protests.


The protests disrupted businesses in Kisumu, and parts of Nairobi where National Super Alliance supporters blocked roads with bonfires while the police used tear gas and live bullets to disperse them.

This affected movement of goods to Uganda through the Busia border, forcing transporters of goods to Kampala to park their trucks and wait for calm to return. 

While condemning the violence, acting Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i said police used force to deal with looters. President Kenyatta urged protestors to maintain peace, but warned that criminals will face the full force of the law.