With the arraignment of police, Kenya Kwanza seeks an official end to abducted Indian nationals and Kenyan driver saga

  • 23 Oct 2023
  • 2 Mins Read
  • 〜 by Kennedy Osore

On Tuesday, October 17, a group of 15 men were charged at Kahawa Law Court in Nairobi, a few meters from Kamiti Prison.

Apart from the last two and the first one on the charge sheet, the men were at various ranks in the police service, from inspector to police constable. 

The men face nine counts and a similar category of charges: Abduction with intent to murder, conspiracy to commit a felony, and cooperating in the execution of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment. 

All the charges are in connection with the abduction and disappearance of two Indian nationals, Zulfiqar Ahmed Khan and Mohamed Zaid Sami, and their Kenyan driver, Nicodemus Mwania Mwange, at the height of the campaigns ahead of the General Election in 2022. 

The arraignment of the 13 officers, an officer from the National Intelligence Service and a warden from the Kenya Wildlife Services marks the revival of a case that appeared to have gone quiet after the initial furore when the Kenya Kwanza administration took office. Among those who celebrated the arraignment was Dennis Itumbi, whose friends said the officers were the same individuals who had abducted him during the campaigns. 

The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions issued a statement: “The DPP recognizes that the investigations into this matter are complex and I hereby direct the Inspector-General to inquire into the aspect of murder and torture as a Crime against Humanity under the International Crimes Act No. 16 of 2008.”

All the officers have been remanded pending further investigations. If the case is concluded, it will mark an official legal end to an issue that had generated political heat as it was claimed by Kenya Kwanza that the previous administration had ordered the killing of the Indian nationals. Mr Itumbi claimed that the Indians had worked with the Kenya Kwanza campaign. 

Some in the Kenya Kwanza administration had pushed for the prosecution of the top command of the police force at the time of the Indians’ disappearance and had effectively suggested that the heat should go all the way to the political leadership of the service. That did not come to fruition and after the initial arrest and arraignment, the matter has been quiet until now.