JOINT PUBLIC STATEMENT ON THE KENYAN SECURITY LAWS (AMENDMENT) BILL, 2014

Over the past two years, Kenya has faced extraordinary security challenges. As international partners and long-time friends, we stand with Kenya in the fight to defeat al-Shabaab and terrorism.

In light of al-Shabaab’s attacks and ongoing threats, we welcome the effort by the Government of Kenya to revise and update the country’s security legislation.  We encourage Kenya’s elected officials to take the time to review carefully the bill now before the National Assembly and to consult broadly to build consensus.  It is important that the legislation, while strengthening security, respects human rights and international obligations.  Protecting Kenya’s Constitution and upholding civil liberties and democracy are among the most effective ways to bolster security.

We also urge Kenya to continue implementing broader reforms to strengthen its security services, including their ability to collaborate across agency lines and carry out operations with full respect for human rights and the rule of law.  Building trust between communities and the security services is also critical.

As Kenya’s international partners, we underscore again our commitment to work with the Government and people of Kenya to meet this country’s challenges, including those related to security.  We are committed to our friendship and to assisting Kenya as it works to build a more secure and prosperous nation.

Signed:

Ambassador of the United States to Kenya Robert F. Godec
High Commissioner of the United Kingdom to Kenya Dr. Christian Turner
High Commissioner of Australia to Kenya Geoff Tooth
Ambassador of the Netherlands to Kenya Joost Reintjes
Ambassador of Germany to Kenya Andreas Peschke
Ambassador of Denmark to Kenya Geert Andersen
Ambassador of France to Kenya Rémi Maréchaux
Ambassador of Sweden to Kenya Johan Borgstam
High Commissioner of Canada to Kenya David Angell

29 comments

  • Oppen Society Democracy

    This is one of the biggest conspiracy in modern times engineered by forces of imperialist west led by USA and her European vassal states. Europe is not free. Kenya and other Amison troops are being used to fight imperialist wars in Somali .It is rime Kenya to withdraw her kdf from Somali soil.

  • Time for Kenya and African countries to move East and join Euro Asian Economies(Eurasia) and leave west oppressors.Africa Countries should strive to join (BRICS)and do away with western colonial powers.

  • Dictator Uhuru Kenyatta

    Robert Alai: Kenyan blogger charged over Uhuru Kenyatta slur

    A popular but controversial Kenyan blogger has been charged with undermining the presidency, following a tweet he posted earlier this week.

    Robert Alai, a fierce government critic, called President Uhuru Kenyatta an “adolescent president”.

    He denied the charge and was released on bail of $2,000 (£1,300) but ordered not to post similar comments while investigations continue.

    Mr Alai is among Kenya’s most prominent and influential bloggers.

    He has 140,000 followers on Twitter.

    The BBC’s Emmanuel Igunza in Nairobi says Mr Alai attracts love and hate in equal measure.

    On the same day as calling Mr Kenyatta an “adolescent president”, he also tweeted the phone numbers of the president and other senior officials.

    Mr Alai has already received massive support on Twitter from Kenyans who see his prosecution as part of a government scheme to curtail media freedom and freedom of expression.

    Soon after being released, he tweeted defiantly that it will be hard to silence him.

    Two years ago, he was arrested and questioned after claiming that the then government spokesman was planning to kill him.
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-30522356

  • Bernie Ecclestone has been a staunch supporter of Russian President Vladimir Putin. He has called him a “first class person,” and says Russian’s should be “very proud of what he’s done and what he’s doing.”

    ”Ignore all this nonsense from America and Europe because as I said before – It would be very nice to have him running Europe. He knows what he’s doing. He is positive and in the end he will succeed because I think all these silly things like these sanctions are completely utterly wrong.”

  • By Boniface Mwangi.

    ************************************************************
    Dear CORD,

    On Thursday the 18th of December you called upon Kenyans from all walks of life to come out in large numbers in opposition to the passing of the security bill. In fact the words you used were ‘mass action’ and the code name for the protest was ‪#‎OccupyParliament‬. From your party leader Raila Odinga, to other leading lights of the party, such as senator Bonnie Khalwale, you encouraged Kenyans to come in droves.

    Members of Bunge la Mwanainchi answered to the call and went to the streets yesterday. Sadly they were the only people who turned up for the protest. Neither the leadership nor the membership of CORD could be seen. Eight of those who came for the protest were assaulted and arrested by the anti-riot police, despite the peaceful nature of their protest.

    On the 19th of December, the arrested were arraigned and charged with incitement to cause violence and unlawful assembly. Surprisingly CORD was absent and they didn’t send lawyers to represent them. Civil society sent a lawyer Mbugua Mureithi who asked the magistrate for a friendly cash bail and the prosecution didn’t object. To rub salt to their literal wounds, Resident Magistrate PM Mugure ordered that the accused be released on a surety or bond of Sh. 300,000 each, that’s Sh 2.4 million for the eight of them. Simply put they are faced with the prospect of spending Christmas in prison.

    Where was CORD? Why have they betrayed those young men who answered their call?

    This is not the first time that CORD has forsaken brave Kenyans who are willing to fight for just causes. In June last we year we held the first occupy parliament protesting the attempt by Members of Parliament to award themselves a pay rise. The protest was violently disrupted, many were beaten, and 17 people were arrested and charged in court for exercising their rights. CORD was silent.

    On Feb 13 this year we called for a state of the nation protest, Rev. Timothy Njoya had graciously agreed to give a sermon about the state of the nation outside parliament. The government cancelled the protest using a questionable press release on the morning of the protest, the many who turned up at Uhuru park were tear gassed including Reverend Njoya and those arrested are still in court. CORD once again, was silent.

    Will CORD ever speak up for the masses or will they continue blaming the tyranny of numbers for their silence. Their inability to speak when things go wrong, their failure to even turn up for a protest they organised; these are the signs of a movement that not only lacks the resolve to stand up for the truth, but also lacks any concrete solutions. CORD as opposition has not achieved a single thing for Kenyans since they took that role in march 2013.

    It is time that progressive and non-tribal Kenyans, formed a third party that will be responsive to Kenyans needs.

    While concerned citizens look for funds to bail out the eight young men, we hope CORD will at least be ashamed enough to do something.

    B.M

  • Pokot Local News

    Nato Castrator-

  • Uhuru Kenyatta >You cannot win this war.Its too tough ,mighty .huge mamoth for you and your tribal chauvinsm>

  • A coward Kikuyu Mp who bits his opponents in a fight>

  • There’s total need for beefing up security in the country but it should be done without infringing on the basic rights and privacy of the common mwananchi. The targeted terrorists are so clever that they can easily operate under cover leaving the common wananchi to pay heavily for their survival. They’ll not know who to fear most between the security guards and the criminals. It is going to be immensely difficult for ordinary people to report anything suspicious without tangible evidence for fear of being adversely implicated and fined or jailed. They’ll be prone to blackmail hence bribery and corruption. The new laws need to be counter checked and reviewed.

  • Here nobody cares of Security >A gift free of charge during christmas>

    Merry Christmas!

  • This is how friends of Al-shaababs are vetted in Kenya Police-clan>

  • Lolo what’s on ? Huyo ni Kiongozi kabisa>

  • Kenyan High Court suspends anti-terrorism law

    Kenya Suspends Parts Of Controversial Anti-Terrorism Law Over Human Rights Concerns

    http://uk.businessinsider.com/afp-kenya-high-court-suspends-parts-of-controversial-security-law-2015-1?r=US

    HERE ARE THE SUSPENDED CLAUSES

    • Clause 12 that inserts a new section into the Penal Code that targets citizen journalism and crowd sourced reporting.

    • Clause 16, that along with Clauses 15-21, amend the Criminal Procedure Code to increase the hold of the carceral state, i.e permitting the police to hold arrested suspects longer than 24 hours.

    • Clauses 26 and 29 of The Evidence Act that along Clauses
    26-31, allows electronic messages and digital material to be
    admissible as evidence in legal proceedings.

    • Clause 48 of The Refugees Act, that along with Clauses 45-48, limits the number of refugees permitted to be in Kenya to 150,000 or a number to be determined by the legislature; restricting refugees’ freedom of movement, as they must now stay in camps, unless they receive permission to move out of those camps; and limiting the amount of time refugees might need to settle in—refugees must report to Kenyan authorities
    immediately.

    • Clauses 56 and 58 that amended the National Intelligence
    Service Act by giving national intelligence agencies substantially more power to arrest suspects arbitrarily; enter into any residences and conduct arbitrary searches based on permission from the Director General; and, in general, violate many constitutional provisions that guarantee privacy and security of the person.

    • Clause 64 of Prevention of Terrorism Act, that along with
    Clauses 60-74 amend the Prevention of Terrorism Act. A few
    highlights: 12D. A person who adopts or promotes an extreme belief system for the purpose of facilitating ideologically based violence to advance political, religious or social change commits an offence and is liable on conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding thirty years.

  • dictator Kenyatta

    Trust government, it knows best after all

    Thursday, December 18, 2014 – 08:00 — By Patrick Gathara

    Today, barely four years after it was inaugurated with much pomp and ceremony, Kenya’s new constitution is being undone. The Security Laws (Amendment) Bill introduced in Parliament last week portends the return of the all-powerful, unchecked executive and its intrusion into almost every facet of Kenyans’ lives. Under the guise of giving the government the tools to fight insecurity, the proposed gives government wide and unchecked discretion in defining what constitutes a threat and taking measures to mitigate against it. It cuts a large swathe through constitutionally guaranteed rights to privacy, fair trial, assembly, information, expression and thought as well as freedoms from arbitrary detention and even torture, in a misguided attempt to respond to rising incidents of insecurity, including terrorist attacks. This atrocious piece of legislation is just the culmination of a long period of elites undermining the foundations of liberal democracy in Kenya.

    The fact is, while the adoption of the new constitution should have heralded the democratisation of government, the logic of tyranny was largely left intact. In Kenya, as elsewhere, the fight for freedom has primarily boiled down to a struggle against the idea that government and ruling elites know what’s best. From colonial times, the people in power have disguised their oppression under a proclaimed special knowledge and patronising parental concern for those they oppressed. The British claimed to govern in the interests of the native population, to be the altruistic purveyors of civilisation, even as they murdered, looted and repressed. However, it is plain that many who led the struggle for freedom, did not themselves fundamentally reject this idea. Successive post-independence governments similarly claimed to be “baba na mama (father and mother)” to the Kenyans they were robbing blind and whose rights they were trampling underfoot. For them, it was not oppression that was the problem, but rather who it was doing the oppressing.

    Following their footsteps, in 2003 John Michuki, a former colonial enforcer reinvented as a minister in the government of President Kibaki, which ended four decades of despotic rule by the independence party Kanu, suggested that constitutional reforms were no longer necessary since the sole objective had been to unseat the dictator, President Moi. In fact, with Moi’s exit, the struggle ceased to be about principles and increasingly became about power, and between those who had it and those who wanted it. Many of the leading lights of civil society and the church marched straight into government and into the annals of corruption and kleptocracy. Not only was there a failed attempt to foist a bastardised version of a new constitution on Kenyans in 2005, but by 2007, the electoral arrangements that had been negotiated with Moi to ensure a credible poll in 2002, were being rolled back. Following yet another round of election related bloodletting, a new constitution was inaugurated in 2010, which was meant to change the way our politics worked. But, as last week sadly showed, that is yet to take root.

    Too many ordinary Kenyans have been seduced into thinking that the government knows best, that it is actually the checks on the arbitrary exercise of power that are the problem, that instead of constraining rogue government, the constitution is making us more vulnerable to terrorism. Despite the fact that it has largely failed to implement the security system as envisaged in our constitution and laws, the government has spun its own incompetence into a narrative of excessive constitutional restraints. So once again we hear the refrain that ‘We are not Moi. You can trust us with power’. The false narrative is propagated that it was Moi and not the concentration of unchecked power in the presidency that led to the state-sponsored terrorism that killed many more people and destroyed many more lives than its religious and ideologically inspired cousin. We even hear talk that some oppression is fine, even desirable, and that Moi, who has been rehabilitated from oppressive tyrant to strong and wise leader and elderly statesman, was an effective bulwark against terrorism, even as he terrorised his countrymen. Kenya’s slide into the seductive embrace of authoritarianism has been aided by the silencing of alternative voices, the continuing demonisation of civil society and the lobotomising of the news agenda. Its purpose is to keep the citizenry divided, blind and uninformed, only privy to the official truths of government spin-masters.

    The publication of government press releases as news by the insipid media, and the Church’s support for tyranny demonstrate just how successful the government has been. The Security Laws (Amendment) Bill is the fruit of these efforts and Parliament’s rush to adopt it is proof that the idea of the assembly as a check on executive excess and not a rubber stamp for its decisions, has also been abandoned. In the end, it is the people who must do the work of protecting the country from its government, the labour of upholding the constitution. While some, under the banner of ‘civil society’ or ‘opposition’ can take the lead, it does not absolve the citizen from this duty. Just as it is the ordinary Kenyan who will suffer from the worst excesses of unaccountable government, it is we who must resist its re-emergence. We must not be suckered by the false notion that the government knows best. It doesn’t. And even when we might be inclined to believe its good intentions, history shows, it doesn’t stay that way for long. Those you think are on your side today may very well turn out to be your oppressors tomorrow and the laws being cheered on today will be the yoke of tomorrow’s subjugation. That is the reality that Kenyans will sooner or later have to wake up to. – See more at: http://www.the-star.co.ke/news/trust-government-it-knows-best-after-all#sthash.TlMnpZCX.dpuf

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