MRC threatens to sue Inspector General of police over Al Shabaab linkage.

MRC threatens to sue Inspector General of police over Al Shabaab linkage.

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The Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) on Monday gave the inspector general of police David Kimaiyo a 30-day ultimatum to apologise or be sued, over remarks he made linking the coastal separatists to the Al Shabaab militant group.

In a letter addressed to Kimaiyo, the group through their lawyers, said the statement by the inspector general was slanderous as it depicted members of the group as murderous criminals out to destabilise national peace and security.

“The statement is careless, reckless and dangerous because it is made without any evidence backing it,” the letter read in part.

MRC also claimed that Kimaiyo’s assertions had put the lives of its officials and known or perceived members of the group in danger of suffering extra judicial killings and assassinations by both the police and those who targeted Al Shabaab members.

Earlier this month sections of the local media published reports quoting the inspector general saying that MRC had established links with Al Shabaab, and that the two were working closely.

In the letter signed by Mombasa lawyer Yusuf Aboubakar, the MRC said they already had cases pending in court over issues of their legality and calls for secession, and argued that Kimaiyo’s statement may prejudice the minds of the judges and magistrates handling those cases.

“Unless you apologise to our client in the next thirty days, we shall have no option but to take you to court without any further reference to you  whatsoever,” read the letter.

The MRC was adversely mentioned for alleged involvement in the Lamu attacks in June and July, which claimed over 90 lives, but they denied involvement.

The group hit headlines in 2012 and 2013 when its youth reportedly launched attacks across the coast region, calling for the secession of the Coastal region from the rest of Kenya, over alleged social and economic marginalising of the region by the national government.

The government would then mount a fierce crackdown that saw the arrest of the group’s senior most officials including chairman Omar Mwamnuadzi, who were charged but later released.