Boy tells how police shot dead cousin, 14

Wednesday August 27 2014

Muslims for Human Rights (Muhuri) executive director Khelef Khalifa (right) with Ms Umazi Zani (centre), the mother of Kwekwe Mwandaza, and Mr Ndurya Zani, a relative, at the lobby group’s offices in Mombasa on Wednesday.

Muslims for Human Rights (Muhuri) executive director Khelef Khalifa (right) with Ms Umazi Zani (centre), the mother of Kwekwe Mwandaza, and Mr Ndurya Zani, a relative, at the lobby group’s offices in Mombasa on Wednesday. PHOTO | KEVIN ODIT |  NATION MEDIA GROUP |

By BOZO JENJE
More by this Author
By MWAKERA MWAJEFA
More by this Author

An eight-year-old boy has narrated how his cousin was brutally killed by policemen when they raided their home in Maweu village, Kwale County, last weekend.
Mgandi George contradicted police reports that they opened fire on 14-year-old Kwekwe Mwandaza after she attacked them with a machete. He said the eight officers stormed their house around 2am and started shooting.

The officers are said to have been looking for Kwekwe’s uncle over an undisclosed crime. “Soon after killing her, they realised I had been watching. One of them ordered his colleague to finish me,’’ said George, who was in the company of his grandmother Grace Zani.

“However, the officer who was being ordered to shoot me said I should not be killed because I was too young to reveal anything. That is how my life was spared,” he told the Nation on Wednesday.

George spoke shortly after a team of officers from Kwale Criminal Investigation Department visited the home and recorded statements.

Led by the Kwale County CID boss Wilfred Ogega, the officers took pictures at the scene of crime, including photos of blood stained clothes.

On the fateful night, George explained, he was in the bedroom together with Kwekwe and another cousin, seven-year-old Luvuno George.
“We heard a commotion outside before the police officers kicked the door open. They first lobbed tear gas cannisters in the house before they entered demanding to know where my uncle was,” the boy explained.

SHOT HER IN THE HEAD

He went on: “Kwekwe jumped off the bed and told them that uncle was not in. However, they still went ahead and shot her in head. She fell on the floor.”
He said the officers continued shooting even after killing her. “Then one took her and they hurriedly left with blood still oozing out of her body,’’ said a traumatised George.

His 67-year-old grandmother Grace said she heard gunshots from her house which is a few metres away. “I feared venturing out because it was raining heavily that night,” Ms Zani said. “It was later that I learnt my grandchild had been killed.”

“Since we did not know where they had taken her body, we started tracing blood stains. We later found her naked body at the Kinango District Hospital mortuary,” she said.

She said mortuary attendants told them that Kwekwe’s body had been found in a thicket and that her killers were unknown.
“It was after that I called her mother Umazi Zani,” she said.

Kwale County Commissioner Evans Achoki Wednesday urged the residents to wait for the outcome of ongoing police investigations.
The police alleged they shot the girl after she threatened them with a panga.

But the family has since dismissed the panga theory, claiming it is a ploy to cover up the truth.

Authorities bowed to mounting public pressure to commence investigations into the killing.

The Independent Policing Oversight Authority opened an investigation into the shooting and announced that two live bullets and a spent cartridge had been recovered from the scene.