A reporter with Mbaitu FM was on Monday assaulted by prison warders at an accident scene near Machakos Town.
Dennis Mwikya, a reporter, was accosted by the officers while on official duty along the Machakos-Makutano road near the ASK showground.
Speaking to kenyagist.com, Mwikya explained that he was headed to the scene to cover the accident near Red Cross offices at around 6pm.
“When I got to the scene, there was some tension as I found around ten prison warders who were in uniform while others were armed with rifles. On looking around I saw a motorcycle which was on the ground with some parts destroyed,” he told this writer on the phone.
It was then he started talking to eyewitnesses at the scene where he learned that a prison warder who was alleged to be riding the boda-boda with two passengers was hit at the back by a lorry and died on the spot. The passengers were rushed to Machakos hospital.
“I tried to take a photograph of the scene of the accident and that is when one warder snatched my phone. I identified myself as a journalist with Mbaitu FM and showed him my press card.
“He did not want to listen to me. He slapped me on my right cheek while ordering his colleagues to take my phone. I managed to take my phone and put it in my pockets. Two others joined him and started beating me,” he recalled.
Luckily, he spotted an officer who knew him. the officer directed his colleagues to stop assaulting him.
He returned to work and later filed a report at Machakos Police station.
Condemning the incident, Mbaitu FM managing Director Martin Masai wrote to the Machakos county Commander Mohamed F. Maalim demanding for the officers be taken action.
“I wish to record my displeasure over the attack which is an affront on press freedom and urge for a thorough investigation to be done swiftly and the offending officer(s) be made to face the law,” he conveyed.
The incident comes weeks after KTN reporter Caroline Bii, her cameraman, Magana Kirira and driver only identified as Emaculate Joseph suffered injuries on Monday after students of St.Stephens Girls Secondary School, Machakos County allegedly stoned and kicked them out of their school.