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Maandamano: MCK sends warning to police over safety of journalists

The Media Council of Kenya (MCK) has condemned an incident where a police officer masquerading as a journalist was captured arresting in Mabatini area, Mathare Sub-county.

In a statement, MCK said that how the officer joined journalists and pretended to be one of them before making an arrest was a threat to media work.

“The MCK has noted with deep concern cases of security officers camouflaging as journalists covering protests with intent to arrest protesters,” the statement read in part, adding that impersonation of journalists by the police is a grave unprofessional misconduct.

MCK said that how the officer made the arrest was only putting the lives of professional journalists in danger.

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It also condemned the arrest of journalists who were on the morning of Wednesday, July 19, 2023 nabbed as they covered the protests.

In a video that went viral on various social media platforms, a plain cloth police officer was captured standing next to journalists as he used his phone to take photos before he rushed and arrested one of the protesters.

Immediately he was captured, the protester is heard questioning the police on why they had shot teargas to children in the house.

The man is heard saying that he was not part and parcel of the demonstrators and only decided to go out after his child fainted due to the effects of the tear gas thrown in his house.

He was finally bundled into a waiting police truck and is expected to be arraigned at the Makadara Law Courts today, Thursday, July 20, 2023.

The National Police Service (NPS) has maintained that the anti-government demonstrations called by the opposition were illegal.

However, the opposition, through Azimio la Umoja leader Raila Odinga has maintained that the demonstrations will continue until Friday, July 21, 2023.

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