University of Nairobi closed after Babu Owino re-election protest

Tuesday April 5 2016

University of Nairobi of students set Sonu

University of Nairobi of students set Sonu offices ablaze on April 4, 2016 while protesting against the re-election of Babu Owino as the student union's chairman. PHOTO | ROBERT NGUGI |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

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The University of Nairobi has been closed, a day after students protested the re-election of Babu Owino as their union leader.

The university’s senate held a meeting Tuesday and resolved to close the university. Students were ordered to vacate the campus by 5pm Tuesday.

On Monday, the protests against Mr Owino turned chaotic when they burnt Student Organisation of Nairobi University (Sonu) offices and blocked a section of University Way and Uhuru Highway before police used tear gas to disperse them.

The protests were organised by a group that lost the polls held on Friday. Those elected have already been sworn in.

Mike Jacobs lost to Mr Owino, attaining 3,000 votes against the winner's 18,000.

Police on Tuesday said they had launched investigations after a video was circulated on social media purportedly showing police brutally assaulting University of Nairobi students.

Kenya Police spokesman Charles Owino, however, said police had not independently confirmed whether the video was captured on Monday at the university.

The video shows police officers beating up the students as they lie down, in a line, on a pavement.