Gambia: CPJ demands investigation of assault against Kenyan journalist

Banjul, Gambia (PANA) - Kenyan authorities should credibly investigate and swiftly bring to justice those responsible for attacking and threatening a Kenyan journalist, Emmanuel Namisi, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ ) has said.

In a statement made available to PANA in Gambia on Saturday, CPJ disclosed that Namisi, a broadcast journalist for the Royal Media group, was threatened and assaulted by bodyguards of Kenneth Lusaka, governor of the western Kenyan county of Bungoma on 5 June.

The bodyguards were reportedly angry over a story the journalist wrote alleging that they played a role in the death of a woman at a political rally three nights earlier.

“One of the bodyguards came to me and asked why I was doing this story,” Namisi told CPJ. “Then they came and started to abuse me.”

The guards accused the journalist of “spoiling” their image and warned him that he “should be very careful,” reminding him that he was a civilian and they were police.

According to the press freedom watchdog, the guards assaulted Namisi and dislocated his leg, for which he sought medical treatment.

“Kenyan security officials should credibly investigate the assault on Royal Media journalist Emmanuel Namisi and show definitively that no one is above the law,” remarked CPJ Africa Programme Coordinator, Angela Quintal. “When attacks on journalists are met with impunity, all journalists are more at risk.”

The statement quoted the governor as saying that he was “told about the incident and felt very bad.”

“I don't condone physical violence, I don't know what exactly provoked that, but I have cautioned all my staff against such behaviour,” said Lusaka.

-0- PANA MLJ/AR 10June2017

10 june 2017 19:57:23

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