News / Africa

Kenya Protesters Demand Justice for Gang Rape Victim

Protesters deliver a letter to the office of Kenya's Inspector General in Nairobi demanding justice in the case of a teenage rape victim, Oct. 31, 2013. (Gabe Joselow/VOA)
Protesters deliver a letter to the office of Kenya's Inspector General in Nairobi demanding justice in the case of a teenage rape victim, Oct. 31, 2013. (Gabe Joselow/VOA)
Gabe Joselow
Hundreds of protesters took to the streets of Nairobi on Thursday to demand justice for a Kenyan rape victim, whose attackers were sentenced to cut grass.  The case has sent shockwaves around the world.
 
Waving signs and placards, some holding women’s underwear strung together as a message against sexual violence, protesters from across Africa marched from Nairobi’s Uhuru Park to the gates of the inspector general’s office, united by a single message: Justice for Liz.
 
“We are here just to call the attention of the government of the police of this country to take the issue very serious,” explained Rafa Machava, a protester from Mozambique.

The rallying cause is the case of a 16-year-old girl, given the pseudonym Liz by the Kenyan media, who was gang raped in June while walking back from her grandfather’s funeral in Busia county in western Kenya.
 
She was so badly injured in the attack, that she is now confined to a wheelchair.
 
The rapists, whom she identified, were taken to the local authorities who ordered them to cut grass in the police station compound as punishment.  They were then set free.
 
“I would like to see them brought behind bars,” said Vincer Mwali, who came to the protest with a group of women from Mombasa, on the Kenyan coast.
 
“I’m a mother who has children, I have a girl, who like one day if such a thing can happen to her, how can I feel?  So I want justice to be done to Liz,” Mwali added.
 
The demonstrators delivered a petition, signed by more than one million people in an online campaign, to the office of Inspector General David Kimaiyo.  The petition demands the arrest of the rapists and punishment for the police officers involved for mishandling the case.
 
The case, originally reported by Kenya’s Daily Nation newspaper has gained the attention of African rights groups.
 
Emma Kaliya, chair of the African women’s development organization Femnet, said activists from 21 countries across the continent joined Thursday’s protest.
 
“Everywhere in Africa these things are happening," she noted.  "And that’s why we are demanding it in a very holistic way.  We are not only talking about Kenya, we are talking about all the countries in Africa to do something about this problem.”
 
Kenyan officials, including Inspector Kimaiyo, have offered assurances that justice will be done.

The director of the public prosecutor’s office says he has ordered the arrest of the six suspects involved.  But so far, none have been apprehended.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Ellen Makiriyado from: USA
October 31, 2013 11:48 PM
Well done womans of Africa !!stand together as one !!God bless

by: olums78 from: Lagos ,Nigeria
October 31, 2013 3:48 PM
This behaviour is barbaric and it has to be decisively handled.the police officer who treated such a big crime with levity has to be prosecuted

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs