Today we mark five years since the murder of our colleague Willie Kimani, our client Josephat Mwenda and trusted driver Joseph Muiruri. Even as we commemorate this day, we are alive to the fact that the case is taking an inordinately long time in court and delaying justice for our brothers. This is not the only case progressing slowly in the justice system.
Today we are encouraged that the new Chief Justice in Kenya Martha Koome has pledged to reduce the time cases take in court to a maximum of three years. This will ensure speedy resolution of cases and justice for both the victims and the suspects. #DelayedJustice
From left to right: Josephat Mwenda (IJM client), Willie Kimani (IJM Kenya human rights lawyer) and Joseph Muiruri (trusted IJM driver).
We know from our casework experience that murder trials, especially those involving police officers, take an average of five years to conclude in court, and we call upon the justice actors in the Judiciary, ODPP*, DCI*, LSK* and IPOA* to work closely to resolve such cases in a short time. We welcome the new initiative by justice actors led by the DPP in the recently launched Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) on Investigation & Prosecution of Serious Human Rights Violations Committed by Police Officers.
Delayed justice is a double tragedy for these families. It leads to psychological distress for the families of victims as they struggle with the healing process. Long cases put their lives on hold and make it difficult to find closure while the case is still in court.
IJM Kenya is working on the ground with partners to address police brutality, and accompany victims of police abuse until they are delivered justice.
Learn more about IJM's work in Kenya to tackle police abuse of power and delayed justice for victims of abuse.
*ODPP: Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, DCI: Directorate of Criminal Investigations, LSK: Law Society of Kenya, IPOA: Independent Policing Oversight Authority