BY EMILY ONYANGO
(SAUTI YA MTAA) –The Oromo community met recently in Eastleigh estate to discuss critical issues that for the last month, have been affecting their community.
They believe that there are people who have been sent to kidnap Oromo residents and take them back forcefully to Ethiopia where ethnic Oromo are subject to arbitrary arrest, detentions without access to lawyers, repeated torture and even targeted killings to crush dissidence.
So far, approximately 70 people have been forcefully taken back in this manner
Many of the respondents said they had been detained in prisons, police stations, where they are subjected to repeated torture.
They listed a myriad human rights problems they faced including arbitrary killings, allegations of torture and mistreatment of detainees by security forces, harsh and at times life-threatening prison conditions, arbitrary arrest and detention, detention without charge, a weak and overburdened judiciary subject to political influence, infringement on citizens’ privacy rights including illegal searches, as well as restrictions on academic freedom and freedom of assembly, association and movement. They also alleged interference in religious affairs, violence and societal discrimination against women, abuse of children, trafficking in persons and societal discrimination against persons with disabilities.
“We are here expressing the problems we Oromo refugees are experiencing here in Kenya. We have fled our home country due to political persecution and execution targeted by the ruling government of Ethiopia, but I feel the Kenyan government are not taking concern of refugees protection seriously. We are being arrested by police and taken back to Ethiopia unlawfully. I believe our rights as refugees are not recognized fully. We have cases of our women being raped and our men taken to Ethiopia,” said Daki Waso.
“ Last Saturday some spies who are believed to come from Ethiopia were taken to the police station but at midnight they were terrorizing the community. Those who reported are not aware which criteria they used to come out from the police station since they are in the country illegally,” said Jabir Sheik-Ismail.