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Azimio demos: IPOA launches probe into police conduct

The Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA) has launched a probe into police conduct during the Azimio demonstrations.

The authority that is mandated to investigate deaths and serious injuries caused by police action, revealed that it is also analysing the events that may have obstructed police in executing its core function of protecting life and property, in efforts to enhance police accountability.

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IPOA Chairperson Anne Makori said the investigations will take into account the fundamental rights and freedoms of all the individuals concerned, including members of the Police Service, in accordance with Chapter Four of the Constitution, and as dictated by Section 24 of the IPOA Act.

The statement was issued against a backdrop of allegations of police brutality. Makori acknowledged they had received several complaints which formed part of their independent probe that she maintained will be fair, apolitical, and impartial.

“IPOA thus takes this opportunity to reassure all other concerned individuals and institutions that it is actively living up to Section 6 (c) of the Independent Policing Oversight Authority Act, which requires the Authority to “monitor and investigate policing operations affecting members of the public” and Section 7 of IPOA Act which gives powers to the Authority, to investigate, “any death or serious injury occurring or suspected to have occurred as a result of police action.” She said

“IPOA is therefore investigating cases reported to us and those undertaken on our own motion including; reported deaths from gunshots, injuries to civilians and police, assault of journalists, and arrests of civilians” she added

Additionally, the Authority has condemned acts of lawlessness by some members of the public, which sadly culminated in the loss of property and injuries to a number of police officers.

“As the NPS strives to contain instances of unlawfulness as mandated by the law, the Authority recommends the use of proportionate force as outlined in the Sixth Schedule of the National Police Service (NPS) Act” Makori stated.

Makori said they will release their findings and recommendations to the concerned agencies.

“As an output of its monitoring operation on the conduct of police during the demonstrations, IPOA will release a consolidated report with findings and recommendations to various agencies including the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution and the National Police Service,” she said.

“This is specific to the wholesome conduct and operational efficiency of the NPS in execution of its mandate.  Besides this, the arising individual investigations will take their own course to conclusion. IPOA remains independent, impartial, fair and apolitical in all its investigations” she explained.

 

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