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At least a million people across the globe have
signed a petition to push for the arrest and
prosecution of suspects who gang-raped and
violently attacked a Busia pupil four months ago.
The online petition, started by Kenyan Nebila
Abdulmelik of African Women’s Communication
Network (Femnet), through the international
campaign network, Avaaz, had by Monday afternoon
hit the one million mark.
“We’re mobilizing citizens to add their voice, their
solidarity and their outrage for the way Liz’s case was
handled.
Four months after her ordeal, Liz is still awaiting
Justice.
Liz is not the first nor the last case but she has
become our rallying call to ensure that impunity
doesn’t go unanswered.
We want justice, and we want it now – for Liz and all
others like her,’’ said Ms Abdulmelik
Human rights organisations intend to present to the
petition signatures to Inspector General of Police
David Kimaiyo on Thursday at his office.
The story has also been widely covered by the
international media including the Guardian which in
its Sunday edition headlining it: Kenya’s women fight
for justice as rapists are sentenced to cut grass.’’
The campaigners are demanding justice for the
Standard Seven pupil who was beaten, gang-raped
and dumped in a pit latrine on June 26, at Tingolo
village in Busia County.
The matter was reported to Tingolo Administration
Police Camp the following morning by villagers who
also seized three of the suspects.
The officers on duty, recorded it as an assault, and
released the suspects after making them cut grass in
the compound as punishment.
The teenager is now wheel-chair bound from a spinal
injury and developed obstetric fistula from what
doctors say is as a result of the rape.
She is receiving treatment at Gynocare Fistula Centre
in Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County.
The campaign, JusticeforLiz, spearheaded locally by
the Coalition on Women Against Violence (Covaw),
Youth Deliver and Femnet, has also attracted the
attention of Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo
who at the weekend gave the assurance that justice
would be done.
But Mr Kimaiyo’s posts on his twitter handle sparked
immediate response and confusion when, in
response to the campaigners on Saturday, indicated
that the suspects had been arrested and charge in
court.
He did not immediately respond to inquiries by
Sunday Nation for further details.
“Thank you all for tweets JusticeforLiz.
The matter is almost concluded and suspects have
been arraigned in court awaiting hearing date. IG’’
In the evening however, the tweet posted at 10.15am
was deleted with the Inspector General posting fresh
ones.
Read the post: “Our investigations are complete. We
are awaiting normal process from DPP. IG.’’
The other read:’’ The file has been processed through
the normal channel and forwarded to the DPP for
advice.’’
Monday, Ms Saida Ali, Covaw’s executive director the
morning protests would start at Uhuru Park’s
Freedom Corner to press for police action in the Busia
rape and the need to address “escalating’’ rape
cases.
“The organisations have resulted to a radical
measure to call for the attention of the State and the
need for the State to ensure action in addressing
rape and specifically amplify the call for arrest of
perpetrators of the gang rape of the 16-year old Liz,’’
said Ms Ali of the protests dubbed “keep off our
panties.’’
The Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko
has told the Nation that he has already ordered for
the arrest of the suspects and directed an inquiry
into alleged police failure and mishandling of the
girls case.
The plight of the girl was published on October 8 by
the Nation’s DN2 prompting police investigations.
However, they are yet to arrest the suspects whose
names they have. Butula CID boss Shadrack Bundi
who leads the investigations has maintained they
went underground soon after the story.
A campaign by Nation Media Group to support the16-
old girl get treatment and justice has received
overwhelming support from Kenyans and abroad
with calls to the police to ensure justice for the
abused girl.
Well-wishers donated more than Sh700,000 towards
her medical care.
Last week, Nation visited the teenager in hospital
and paid Sh583,000 for the bills.
Liz, who has already undergone surgery and is
recovering at Gynocare Fistula Centre where she is
also being treated for post-traumatic stress disorder.

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