How Kenyans on social media reacted to Mandera killings
Following the discovery of mutilated bodies in mass graves in Madera on Sunday, Kenyans on social media have expressed their fury over the alleged extrajudicial killings.
The bodies, which were discovered by herders, were found in at least four shallow graves in Lethe, Arabia ward in Mandera East Constituency.
News of the discovery topped headlines and timelines, and social media was abuzz with conversations about the killings.
Many social media users were quick to point an accusatory finger to the security forces. Rallying support under the hash tag #StopKillingSomalis, activists accused Kenya’s security forces of targeting Somalis in their fight against terror.
No murder, whether by terrorist or government can be justified. Somali is a Kenyan tribe just like luo and kikuyu #StopKillingSomalis
— TheUNBowedKE (@ItsAmadala) December 7, 2015
Human life is sacred and must be protected and it can't be taken arbitrarily. Even animals kill only when hungry #StopKillingSomalis
— Sadam Maalim (@sadamgooner) December 7, 2015
Why would the KDF kill people in Mandera?
— Obed Simiyu (@ObedMuindi) December 8, 2015
In response to the allegations, Kenya Defense Forces spokesman, Colonel David Obonyo, refuted claims that the force was behind the mass graves.
“The Ministry of Defence wishes to categorically state that KDF is not involved in any way with the mass grave discovered in Mandera. KDF is not involved in any way with the disappearance of people or extrajudicial killings in Mandera or anywhere else in the country,” said Obonyo.
Others social media users sided with the security agency, reprimanding those who concluded that the killings were the work of government security agencies.
So mass graves are found and it's automatically declared that they were killed by Govt.? How simplistic #StopKillingSomalis
— Amon Kimeli (@arap_chief) December 7, 2015
In an attempt to draw attention to gravity of the issue, a section of social media users shared graphic images from the shallow graves.
This attracted a verbal lashing from others who termed the sharing of the images a as “further disrespect” to those who has been robbed of dignity.
In June, the Kenya National Human Rights Commission (KNHRC) published a report stating that security agents were carrying out extrajudicial killings.
Nyaundi: In a number of death cases, there was a very strong indication of the involvement of security forces #PowerBreakfast
Speaking on Citizen TV’s Power Breakfast, KNHRC CEO Patricia Nyaundi stated that the commission had presented the report to various security agencies in the country.
According to Nyaundi, National Police Service had received the report, promising to take action on the recommendations. The KNHRC CEO stated that attempts to reach the CSs in charge of security had failed.
Nyaundi: We created a report and brought the matter to the necessary authorities. #PowerBreakfast
Nyaundi: We believe that the National Police Service is listening; but we’re yet to have audience with the CS #PowerBreakfast
— Gabriel Dolan (@GabrielDolan1) December 8, 2015