Police were pursuing an armed criminal when Mathare girl was shot, Says Koome

Nairobi Police boss Japheth Koome addressing the media in Nairobi. PHOTO: COURTESY.

Nairobi, KENYA: Nairobi county commander Japheth Koome has said that the 10-year old girl who was shot during the Mathare skirmishes, was hit by a stray bullet when police  were trying to chase after an armed gunman.

Addressing the media on Monday in Nairobi, Koome termed the incident that happened on  Saturday as unfortunate.

“That night police were pursuing an armed gunman who was shooting haphazardly and unfortunately, the girl was killed and the thug managed to escape,” Koome said.

However, locals and even opposition politicians believe police are responsible for the death of the girl.

He further confirmed that police have only killed eight criminals who were armed in some areas which posed threat to the officers, who responded in self-defense.

This contradicts a statement by Kenya National Human Rights Commission which had earlier said that 17 people had died in Nairobi by Saturday following post poll violence.

This comes as unrest has been witnessed in various areas of Nairobi and some parts of Nyanza following the announcement of President Uhuru Kenyatta as the president elect.

The police commander also denied claims that General Service Unit is also involved in safety control in some areas saying it is only propaganda by some opposition leaders.

He assured Kenyans of their safety as they carry on with their daily activities in the country and dismissed allegations that police used excessive force in dealing with the unrest.

“The amount of force we use is determined by the situation,” the County Commander stated.

He has warned those looting people’s properties in the name of peaceful demonstration, citing police wont relent in taking action.