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Justice for Lawyer Mukhtar Dahir

Justice for Lawyer Mukhtar Dahir

In the course of human rights advocacy and defense, there are many stakeholders (in both public and private spheres) with whom the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) works with to achieve milestones in ensuring that Kenya becomes a human rights respecting nation. Among the aforementioned are the Human Rights Defenders (HRDs); individuals who commit themselves to speaking for the voiceless and the downtrodden while seeking to promote justice for human rights violations.

Unfortunately, in the course of their noble work, HRDS are prone to harassment, detention, torture, defamation; suspension from their employment, denial of freedom of expression and movement and difficulty in obtaining legal recognition for their associations in a bid to stifle their conviction to human rights defense.

A case in point is that of Mukhtar Dahir, a lawyer and chairperson of the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) Network in Garissa County. Mukhtar and the network in Garrissa have been working on and around issues pertaining countering violent extremism amongst other human rights concerns.  In 2018, he lodged a complaint with the Commission having continuously received threats from state security officers over his work on violent extremism. He was booked in a local police station under mysterious circumstances after being harassed in a restaurant in Garrissa town.

Under its mandate cited in Article 59(2e) that states that one of the functions of KNCHR is ‘ to receive and investigate complaints about alleged abuses on human rights and take steps to secure appropriate redress when human rights have been violated,’ the Commission acted upon Mukhtar’s case.

 In the long run, with the help of the Commission, Mukhtar got legal representation that saw his release and subsequent acquittal.

A luta Continua!

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