Report of the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns: Addendum - Follow-up country recommendations - Kenya (A/HRC/17/28/Add.4)


Human Rights Council

Seventeenth session

Agenda item 3

Promotion and protection of all human rights, civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development


This report analyses progress made by Kenya in implementing the recommendations made by the former Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions,
Philip Alston, following his visit to the country from 16 to 25 January 2009 (A/HRC/11/2/Add.6). During his visit the Special Rapporteur documented widespread extrajudicial killings by the police, lack of accountability for killings that occurred during the 2007 post-election violence, killings that occurred at Mt. Elgon and intimidation of human rights defenders who cooperated with the Special Rapporteur.

The Government has implemented a number of reforms at the constitutional, legislative and institutional levels. The Constitution adopted in 2010 instituted several reforms, including appointments procedures for public officers, entrenched institutional independence, and guaranteed the principle of checks and balances. The Government has also undertaken comprehensive police reforms. It is hoped that these reforms will help inter alia to transform the law enforcement institutions, to make them transparent and accountable.

However, no concrete actions have been taken to implement many of the recommendations made by the Special Rapporteur. Much remains to be done to address and overcome extrajudicial killings. Police killings as a result of excessive use of force continue to be reported. There has been little or nothing done to ensure that perpetrators are held accountable for the 2007-2008 post-electoral violence or for the killings at Mt. Elgon.

Investigations into the killing of two human rights defenders, who had cooperated with the Special Rapporteur, remain inconclusive. The Government’s commitment to address grave human rights abuses appears to be very minimal. The rate of investigations and prosecution of police killing remains unacceptably low.