IPOA investigates the killing of Boda Boda Chairman in Tharaka Nithi
The Independent Policing and Oversight Authority (IPOA) has launched an investigation into the shooting of Willis Kiraku Mugambi, the boda boda operators’ association chairman in Tharaka Nithi.
The incident happened on the night of Saturday, April 8, 2023, and IPOA has already dispatched a Rapid Response Team to conduct the investigation.
In a statement released on Sunday, April 9, 2023, IPOA Chairperson Ms Ann Makori stated that the organization is always impartial, fair, and transparent in its investigations.
“Our regional office in Meru has this morning dispatched a Rapid Response Team to launch investigations into the death. Upon conclusions of its investigations, the Authority shall take appropriate action including recommending to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) of any person found culpable,” the statement released on Sunday, April 9, 2023, read in part.
She also mentioned that the constitution mandates IPOA to investigate any deaths or serious injuries of civilians in which police officers are involved.
Ms Makori revealed that the Station Commander of Chuka Police Station informed IPOA about the death of Mr Mugambi.
The Rapid Response Team dispatched to Tharaka Nithi will conduct a thorough investigation, and the Authority will take appropriate action, including recommending to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) of any person found culpable.
The incident that led to Mr Mugambi’s death started when anti-riot police officers clashed with locals, including boda boda operators. The locals were protesting the death of a man killed by assailants known to residents.
The incident sparked a night-long battle between police and boda boda operators, leading to Mr Mugambi’s death.
The situation became tense when a mob barricaded the Meru-Nairobi Highway using stones and a casket containing the body of Daniel Mutembei, a resident of Nkwego village.
The residents demanded the arrest of the killers of Mr Mutembei. Police officers dispersed the demonstrators, and it was during this time that Mr Mugambi was shot in the chest and died at the scene.
He was shot in the chest at around 7pm, and died at the scene. The body of Mr Mugambi remained at the scene for hours, further escalating the tensions between the police and the locals.
IPOA’s investigation is aimed at bringing to light the circumstances surrounding Mr Mugambi’s death and bringing those responsible to justice.