Yesterday, social media was abuzz with condemnation against the police for brutalizing activist Boniface Mwangi with the inspector of police Hillary Mutyambai coming under fire.
The incident which was captured on video angered Kenyans from across all walks of life.
But on Saturday, the Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai with other officers from National Police Service command have added salt to injury after defending GSU officers involved in the altercation.
In a press release posted on their social media platforms on Saturday October 9, 2021, the National Police Service stated that the said officers, who accompanied KRA officers to arrest traders without branding licenses, were on lawful duties when Mwangi confronted them.
“Police officers in the clip were on lawful assigned duties of assisting KRA officers to enforce Nairobi County Government in revenue collection obligations as part of their mandate,” the statement read in part.
PRESS RELEASE pic.twitter.com/3R26up6uVn
— National Police Service-Kenya (@NPSOfficial_KE) October 9, 2021
The National Police Service proceeds to narrate that their officers had arrested defaulters at the Pension House, Nairobi when Mwangi accosted them, challenging them to identify themselves.
“The activist persisted in his ‘identification’ argument despite the police officers being fully dressed in their official uniforms and being armed with official weapons. And notwithstanding that the exercise was conducted in broad daylight,” the statement read further.
The service claims that Boniface Mwangi took the path of open defiance of the law and obstruction of law enforcement for the purposes of either to facilitate escape of the arrested defaulters or to intimidate officers carrying out their duties.
The service also sought to absolve itself from claims that its officers assaulted the activist. It stated that the seasoned activist caused unnecessary drama by running away and felling himself on the floor to cause commotion.
While commending its officers for exercising what it terms as utmost restraint during the ordeal, the National Police Service beseeched Kenyans to take police officers as partners in enforcement mandates and vowed to ensure the relation between police and citizens improves.