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Citizen Weekly

Tuesday 13 January 2015

Kenya Navy soldiers killed our son, says Likoni family

A family in Likoni has accused soldiers from Kenya Navy’s Mtongwe base of killing their 25-year-old son.
Mr Suleiman Athman was killed after a bag belonging to a female soldier was allegedly stolen on Sunday at Vijiweni in Mtongwe, Mombasa County.
His family claims the soldiers falsely accused him and seized him before he was found dead, but the soldiers claim he was beaten up by a mob.
The deceased man's brother, Mr Stamili Athmani Mwangoli, told the Nation that he was informed on Sunday evening that his brother had been held by a mob.
“He was accused of being part of a gang that had robbed a lady, whom we were told is a military officer.”
He advised the complainant to report the matter to police, but she objected, saying his brother must be taken to the navy barracks to be handled by military police, he said.
Members of the family, accompanied by human rights activists, then went to the Mtongwe base residence but were allegedly chased away.
“We sat outside the gate and saw them asking Suleiman to get into their patrol car. He was alive but had been roughed up a bit by members of the public,” Mr Mwangoli said.
Around 8pm, the female soldier left the navy residence in a car with Mr Suleiman and the family members followed them on a motorcycle, he said.
The soldier realised they were being followed and stopped, according to the family.
Mr Mwangoli said he identified himself as a Nyumba Kumi ambassador and the suspect’s brother.
The soldier allegedly told him that their brother was under KDF custody and that they would kill him.
“Before the car left, we asked Suleiman what had transpired.
"He said he had left home to go and sell poles but on his way home at Mtongwe Dispensary he was accosted by wananchi accusing him of stealing a wallet with Sh15,000,” he said.
A soldier informed them that the robbery victim had been stabbed and was in a hospital.
“I asked Suleiman if he was involved but he denied it.”
The military vehicle sped off and the family members went home, according to Mr Mwangoli.
“I went to Inuka Police Station and asked a police officer if my brother would be brought there.
"Forty-five minutes later, the officer called saying military police had visited the station to (report) an incident that someone had been killed by a mob in Mtongwe,” Mr Mwangoli said.
The police advised the family to go towards the main road where there were two military and police vehicles, he said.
“We took a motorbike and at the gate of (the) Mtongwe Navy residence, we saw police and military officers surrounding a body,” he said.
They introduced themselves, but they were allegedly told to leave.
However, they resisted and confirmed that the body was that of his brother, he said.
Mr Francis Auma, a human rights coordinator at Haki Africa, issued a seven-day ultimatum to the government to arrest and prosecute the soldiers, whom they accused of the killing.

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