Mathare residents angry over ‘barbaric’ illicit brew operation

By: COLLINS KWEYU

_: A group of residents in Mathare slums yesterday criticised the manner in which an operation to weed out illicit brew was carried out on Tuesday.

They termed the raid by AP and GSU barbaric and uncivilised.

The residents said at least two people died of the beating meted by the officers.

They said police used rubber whips and forced some of the people arrested to do press-ups as punishment.

“It would have been better if police heeded President Uhuru Kenyatta’s directive that they destroy illicit brew they find and arrest the brewers but not attack innocent people. They beat up so many innocent people, including women with children,” said resident Ann Juma.

She said one of the dead men had been stripped as police hauled him into a lorry when he refused to carry illegal liquor drums.

Juma said the man was beaten and left to bleed to death.

Reformed mugger Frank Otieno, 34, who works with a National Youth Service project accused the police of using excessive force.

He said since the government introduced NYS projects the number of youth engaged in crime and abuse of alcohol has reduced.

Police spokesperson Mboroki Gatiria said she was out of office during the operation and could not answer any questions about it.

She referred the Star to the county police headquarters for clarification but the phone of county commander Benson Kibue did not going through the better part of yesterday afternoon.