Kenyan court declares Arshad Sharif’s murder illegal, unconstitutional

Kenya’s High Court has ordered its government to compensate the family of Pakistani journalist Arshad Sharif with 10 million Kenyan Shillings (Rs21.7 million) after ruling that his shooting by police in Kajiado County in 2022 was “arbitrary and unconstitutional.” According to Kenyan news agency, Justice Stella Mutuku of the Kenyan court declared that Sharif’s rights to life, equality before the law, and dignity were violated in the incident on October 23, 2022. Arshad Sharif, who had fled Pakistan in July 2022 amid allegations of criticising the military, was fatally shot by Kenyan police in the Tinga area of Kajiado County, later attributed by police to a case of “mistaken identity”. The court suspended the monetary award for 30 days to allow for a potential government appeal. “Given the analysis above, I find that the respondents, through their actions, violated the rights of the petitioners,” Justice Mutuku stated. The widow, Javeria Siddique, had filed a lawsuit against several government officials, accusing them of delaying the investigation into Sharif’s shooting and failing to provide updates to the family. Kenya’s court has also dismissed police claims that firing on Arshad Sharif’s vehicle was based on mistaken identity. “We were considering this car as a vehicle of abductors,” the police had said. The court also ordered a thorough investigation into the conspiracy behind Arshad Sharif’s murder and instructed strict disciplinary action against police and security agencies