Nairobi News


Court faults police for blocking Boniface Mwangi’s bid to march to State house

By MAUREEN KAKAH January 30th, 2017 2 min read

The High Court has ruled that the police violated rights of activist-cum-photojournalist Boniface Mwangi and his team by denying him a request to march to State House.

In his ruling on Monday, Justice Isaac Lenaola said that the right to assemble and demonstrate logically necessitates that a venue must be chosen by the organizers and not the regulating officer.

“It is hereby declared that the officer commanding Kilimani Police division had no lawful authority to intervene on the issue of whether Mr Mwangi and Team Courage could or could not march to State House Gate A on December 9, 2015, such authority having been vested by law on an OCS only,” Justice Lenaola said.

The judge also declared that barring the team was unlawful and declared it as a violation to a fair right to administrative action.


The judge further faulted the fact that Team Courage was never given reasons for the unlawful refusal to proceed as proposed.

The judge, however, said that it appears that the right to assemble, march or demonstrate at State House Gate A is lawfully limited by law and until that is declared as unconstitutional, then it must it be obeyed.

“It is also evident from my analysis that the limitations imposed by law were reasonable and justifiable especially considering that Mr Mwangi had an alternative avenue for ventilating his cause,” Justice Lenaola said.

Boniface Mwangi had sought to present a petition to President Uhuru Kenyatta during the 2015 United Nation’s International Anti-Corruption Day.

The activist sued the Inspector-General of Police, the Kilimani commanding officer and the Attorney-General after the planned march dismissed.


He had claimed that he went to the Kilimani Police Station with a notice stating his intention of marching to State House’s gate A but his request was rejected.

He had alleged that he wanted to present a petition to the President, saying that the Head of State had shown the political will to end corruption.

He wanted the court to compel the sued parties to allow him to go ahead with the demonstration and the public be allowed to join him, but was only asked by court to hold the demonstration as planned but present the petition to the President’s office.

In his petition to President Kenyatta, the activist wanted corruption to be declared a national disaster and that all senior and junior public servants be directed to declare their wealth.

He also wanted a website to be created where the wealth declarations would be posted.