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‘Bhang-in-underwear’ girl sues government seeking Sh 7m compensation

The school girl who was photographed hiding rolls of bhang in her underwear and her nude photos circulated widely on social media has sued the government seeking a compensation of Sh7million.

Lawyers for the girl want the government fined for failing to respect the privacy of the girl and failure to protect her rights.

In the suit supported by a child rights body, Cradle, is also challenging the 18-month probation period handed down by a Kirinyaga County Court to the Form Four student after she pleaded guilty to being in possession of four rolls of bhang.

Lawyers Duncan Okubasu and Gladys Wamaitha for the girl say her rights to human dignity, security, privacy, access to justice and rights to an accused person were violated.

Police stripped the girl in public “and exposed her privacy to cameramen in the name of trying to recover the hidden drugs.”

The aggrieved girl was accused of hiding the four rolls of bhang valued at Sh80 in her private parts.

Cradle is also asking the High Court to order the Director of  Public Prosecutions (DPP) to file a criminal case against the police officers who allegedly stripped the girl and exposed her nudity.

INFRINGEMENT OF RIGHTS

“We urge this court to declare the conduct of police as unlawful and an unreasonable infringement of the students  fundamental and constitutional rights,” Mr Okubasu says in the court papers filed in court.

The lawyers are also asking the court to quash the conviction handed down by Baricho magistrates court.

The girl was found guilty of being in possession of bhang and jailed for 18 months.

During the term the girl will be visiting the probation officer for counselling sessions and also for being rectified.

High Court judge Justice Weldon Korir certified urgent the case filed by Cradle saying “ it raises serious constitutional issues which need to be disposed expeditiously.”

The girl was arrested on August 5 while traveling in a public service vehicle alongside other students to join their families for the August vacation.

Police impounded the bus and profiled the students as having been intoxicated and engaging in indecent acts in public.