As part of the files Wikileaks have dumped online, a Report on Extra-Judicial Killings and Disappearances compiled in 2008 by the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) has laid bare the people who orchestrated extra-judicial killings in 2007.
The file states that extra-judicial executions and other brutal acts of extreme cruelty were perpetrated by the Police against so-called Mungiki adherents and that these acts were committed pursuant to
official policy sanctioned by the political leadership, the Police Commissioner, and top police commanders. “These acts were ordered, directed, or coordinated by the top leadership of the Kenya Police acting jointly with a common purpose.”
Initially, the police mainly used firearms to execute the suspects, however, they subsequently changed their modus operandi and started using methods such as strangulation, drowning, mutilation, and bludgeoning. “The change of strategy was to make members of the public believe that rival Mungiki gangs are responsible for the killings. As such, the cause of death for majority of the latest victims has been
blunt trauma, strangulation, drowning or mutilation using sharp objects” Several witnesses told the KNCHR that the killer squads carried machetes, iron bars, ropes, and other crude weapons in their vehicles.
The document says that spokesperson Mr. Eric Kiraithe, on several occasions attributed the wave of killings to rival Mungiki gangs. He claimed that there was a schism within the Mungiki movement pitting Maina Njenga
and Ndura Waruinge. This was a ploy to divert public attention and conceal the grotesque illegal conduct of the police.
The disappearances and extra-judicial killings heightened following public statements made by top government officials suggesting an official policy to ruthlessly deal with suspected Mungiki members and other criminals. During Madaraka day celebrations on June 1, 2007, President Mwai Kibaki warned that Mungiki sect members should expect no mercy. Two days later, on June 3, 2007, about three hundred suspected Mungiki members were arrested and at least twenty killed when they were reportedly caught administering oaths to recruits.
After this incident, Michuki publicly remarked that ‘Tutawanyorosha na tutawamaliza. Hata wenye wameshikwa kwa kuhusiana na mauaji ya hivi majuzi, siwezi nikakwambia wako wapi leo. Nyinyi tu mtakuwa mkisikia mazishi ya fulani ni ya kesho. (We will pulverize and finish them off. Even those arrested over the recent
killings, I cannot tell you where they are today. What you will certainly hear is that so and so’s burial is tomorrow).
On 20/9/07, the then Minister for Foreign Affairs Hon Raphael Tuju, during the ‘Loius Otieno Live’ program on Citizen TV, said that ‘For the past few months, up to 400 people were killed because they were Mungiki’. The KNCHR is in possession of the TV clip of Minister Tuju making the admission, which was transmitted live.
By the time of compiling of the said report, the KNCHR had compiled at least three hundred names of persons who have either been killed or disappeared. Additionally, there are at least two hundred other persons whose identity the KNCHR was unable to establish since they were merely booked in mortuaries as unknown. Many of these bodies were subsequently disposed of by the respective mortuary authorities after they remained unclaimed by their relatives for long.