Kenya: Release Human Rights Defender, Muchangi Nyaga

Kenyan police must immediately release Muchangi Nyaga, a human rights defender based at Huruma slums Nairobi, who has been unlawfully detained and reportedly assaulted since his arrest on Wednesday 12th February, said the East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project (EHAHRDP) today.

On 12th February 2014, between 9 and 10 pm, police officers reportedly broke into Muchangi Nyaga’s home and proceeded to ransack his property. The police took with them the cash record book and minutes record book of his organisation, Ghetto Green, strongly indicating that he was targeted for arrest on the basis of his work.  Mr. Muchangi was subsequently arrested and detained at Huruma police station. He has since been detained, unlawfully, for over 24 hours.  A visitor who managed to obtain access to Mr. Muchangi on the morning of Friday 14th February reported that his face was swollen, with an open wound on his lip, and blood-stained clothes.

Mr. Muchangi Nyaga is the Co-ordinator of Ghetto Green Foundation, a youth empowerment initiative, formed by INUKA Trust in Huruma, Kenya. Last year, Mr. Muchangi also led the ‘Walk Against Crime’ campaign to mobilize young people against crime and police brutality in Huruma slums.

“I strongly condemn the arrest and assault of Mr. Muchangi and his continued unlawful detention,” said Mr. Hassan Shire, Executive Director of EHAHRDP. “Kenyan authorities must immediately order his release, ensure access to medical treatment, and initiate a full enquiry into the circumstances surrounding this incident.” EHAHRDP called on the Kenyan authorities to respect the vital role played by human rights defenders, and support them to carry out their work, in line with the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders.

For more information, please contact:

Hassan Shire, Executive Director: [email protected] or +256 772 753 753

Rachel Nicholson, Advocacy Officer: [email protected] or +256 778 921 274


Human Rights Defender of the Month: Anny Kapenga

As a young student, Anny Kapenga used to cringe at the cult-like worship of Mobutu Sese Seko, the then Zaire’s President. By then, in the early 1990s, Zaire was still under one party rule, and calls were increasing for Mobutu to open political space to allow other parties to operate. In the meantime, however, all Zairians were expected to show affection for Mobutu wherever they gathered in public.

Students across Zaire’s schools were required to sing and dance adoringly before his (Mobutu)’s portrait every morning before they went to class, and all school scholastic materials were emblemed with his portrait. A young Anny never really appreciated the obsession:


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