Nonviolence Advocacy Against Police Brutality in Nairobi’s Informal Settlements

In February 2020, 24 youth from four Informal Settlements within Nairobi namely Mathare, Dandora, Kibra and Korogocho presented petitions to their respective Police Stations outlining the police excesses rampant in their respective neighbourhoods as well as the actions they would like the police to take or desist from. This followed a training on active nonviolence advocacy against police brutality conducted by CEEC with support from A.J Muste Memorial Institute in December 2019. The training was informed by reports reaching CEEC of mutual hostilities between the police and the youth, and the impunity with which the police mete out excesses such as arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances, torture and extra judicial killings against youth in the informal settlements. The objective of the training was to equip the youth with skills necessary to conduct nonviolent advocacy against these police excesses.  In addition t presenting petitions, the trainees also carried out various activities within the police station, aimed at mending the broken relationship between them and the police. These included clean ups, painting the police stations and planting trees. Feedback received at the end of the project pointed at an improved relationship between the police and the youth, reduction of mutual suspicion and hostility as well as a willingness by both sides to work together to address issues of common interest, especially maintenance of law and order devoid of human rights violation.