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Who killed Meru blogger? Robert Alai asks DCI to speed up investigations

By Nyaboga Kiage December 18th, 2023 2 min read

Kileleshwa County Assembly member Robert Alai has asked the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to investigate the murder of Daniel Muthiani alias Sniper, a Meru County-based blogger.

In a statement, Mr Alai, who made hay as a blogger before entering politics, also asked the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to join the investigation.

“We urge the DCI, together with the office of the DPP, to launch an immediate and thorough investigation into this heinous crime. It is imperative to protect the constitutional rights of the public, the media and bloggers as part of the fifth estate as enshrined in both national and international laws and best practices,” the statement read in part.

Mr Alai also expressed concern over recent threats issued by Isiolo leaders, including the deputy governor, to bloggers operating in the county.

He said the threats were only aimed at silencing people who wanted to exercise their freedom of expression.

“We strongly maintain that public office holders must be open to scrutiny, criticism and tough questions as these are essential elements of any constitutional democracy. The killing of blogger Daniel Muthiani must not go unpunished and highlights a worrying trend of threats to media freedom in Kenya,” the statement added.

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He also said the deaths of fellow blogger Frank Obegi, who was killed along with three others, and Augustus Mutuku Mwathe in 2021 were examples of the dangers bloggers face on a daily basis in the country.

Mr Alai also spoke of the unsolved cases of Mr Tony Chumba and Mr Denis Itumbi, who were abducted and tortured. He also mentioned the mysterious disappearance of blogger Bogonko Bosire, who disappeared in 2013.

“Moreover, attacks on bloggers such as Pauline Njoroge, who has been subjected to harassment by current and former senior State House staff, as well as unwarranted legal charges by the police, reveal an alarming pattern of intimidation and abuse by both anonymous individuals and those in authority,” Mr Alai said.

The political leader also condemned Mr David Ndii, the financial adviser to President Dr William Ruto, and political analyst Mutahi Ngunyi for attacking Ms Pauline Njoroge on social media.

On Saturday 16 December 2023, Mr Muthiani was found dead after going missing on Monday 4 December 2023.

Abogeta West County Assembly member Denis Kiogora confirmed the disheartening news to Nairobi News, expressing condolences and stressing the need for justice.

“He was found dead on Saturday the 16th of December. May his soul rest in strength. May his killers never know peace,” said Mr Kiogora, who is also the Chief Whip in the Meru County Assembly.

The blogger’s sudden death has sparked an online debate, with many mourning the loss of a fearless individual who always spoke his mind.

He was known for his courageous stance on various social and political issues.

The circumstances surrounding his disappearance and subsequent demise remain unclear.