Activist narrates her five-hour ordeal in the hands of city abductors
A human rights activist who went missing on Tuesday has opened up on her five-hour ordeal in the hands of her alleged captors.
Ms Mildred Atieno Owiso, popularly known as Atty, says she was abducted along Mombasa Road in Nairobi by men in civilian clothes.
The men were driving a white saloon car, she alleges.
“I was taken to some building at Syokimau where (I) was interrogated about the planned Thursday’s protests against spiralling corruption,” she said.
Ms Owiso, in the company of her lawyer Elvis Abenga, was planning to deliver a notice to Central Police Station in Nairobi on the planned demonstrations before she was kidnapped.
She frantically sent a WhatsApp message to her lawyer and some friends informing them about her predicament, according to statement shared on National Coalition of Human Rights Defenders Kenya (NCHRD-K) on Twitter.
“The abductors said they know me and had my picture before (they) bundled into the car and drove away. They told me to switch off the phone.
After the interrogation, whose details she did not divulge, the rights activist behind #BuyerBeAwareke campaign was later abandoned along Mombasa Road.
“After the interrogation, they sternly warned me to keep off social media and to stop organising the protest. Though I was not physically hurt, I am quite traumatised,” she says.
According to NCHRD-K Executive Director Kamau Ngugi, the organisers of Thursday’s protests under the banner: #STOPTheseTHIEVES, have been receiving threats.
“The threats to the organisers have been going on for the last one and half weeks and some of the threats have been reported to various police stations. The threats are meant to demoralise the organisers,” said Mr Ngugi.
He claimed police refused to receive their notice on the planned protests.
Under the Kenyan law, planners of protests are required to notify police in writing on their plans so that the service can provide security.
Ms Owiso was the whistleblower of the disputed rape scandal at Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) that caused uproar in the country late January.