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Kenyans Demand Answers in the Death of Human Rights Activist Caroline Mwatha

Police say she died from a 'botched abortion," but many Kenyans remain skeptical over the cause of her death due to her status as a whistleblower.

Carloine Mwatha, a human rights activist who documented extrajudicial killings by Kenyan police, was found dead on Tuesday after having gone missing last Wednesday.

Her disappearance led many Kenyans and international organizations, such as Amnesty International, to rally online using the hashtag #FindCarolineMwatha in order to help locate her, but hopes of her safe return, were dimmed on Tuesday after her body was found at the City Mortuary in Nairobi.


A police report, released on Tuesday, claims that Mwatha died from abortion-related complications, though the validity of these findings are being brought into question.

So far, six people have been arrested in connection to her death, according to the Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti, including Mwatha's boyfriend Alexander Gitau Gikonyo, the owner of the clinic and his son, a doctor, her Uber driver and another suspect identified as Georgia Achieng' Tabitha.

Despite reports pointing to a botched abortion as the cause of death, several Kenyans are seeking more proof in order to rule out that Mwatha's death may have been related to her work as an activist who documented illegal killings by police through her work with the Dandora Community Justice Centre. According to the Daily Nation, members of her family believe the abortion story to be a "cover up" by the police.

They are demanding that an independent post-mortem be conducted immediately, in order "to find the truth."




The story has also raised discussions around the lack of safe abortions in Kenya. Abortion is illegal in Kenya unless it is determined that the mother's or baby's health is in danger. However, according to statistics shared in Capital News, as many as 400,000 women undergo abortions every year.

Many are sharing heartfelt messages of condolence for Mwatha, who is being remembered for her fearless human rights work.



Photo by Minasse Wondimu Hailu/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images.

The African Union Condemns Violence Against #EndSARS Protesters in Nigeria

The African Union Commission chairperson has (finally) condemned the deadly violence against protesters calling for an end to police brutality in Nigeria. However, many feel the body's declaration is a little too late.

EWN reports that the African Union (AU) Commission chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat has "strongly condemned the violence that erupted on 20 October 2020 during protests in Lagos, Nigeria that has resulted in multiple deaths and injuries." However, Mahamat's statement did not specifically denounce the actions of the security forces' actions. This past Tuesday, protesters calling for the disbandment of the infamous and an end to police brutality, were shot at by security forces at Lekki Toll Gate. The incident occurred shortly after an abrupt 24-hour curfew had been imposed by the State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the AU has called for all involved "political and social actors to reject the use of violence and respect human rights and the rule of law" and recommended that they "privilege dialogue".
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How Technology Is Playing a Crucial Role in the #EndSARS Protests

Young people in Nigeria have successfully managed to use technological innovations to organize and make the #EndSARS protests run incredibly efficiently and easily. This moment will go down in history as a revolution that was birthed via technology.

It has been more than a week since young people in Nigeria took to the streets to demand that the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, infamously known as SARS, be scrapped for good. Created in 1992, this police unit was originally set up to beat back armed robbery, the use of firearms and rising cases of kidnappings that grew in the late eighties. However, the unit went rogue, becoming more notorious for its savagery than actual crime-fighting. With a rap sheet ranging from profiling, harassment and assault to, in more extreme cases, slaughtering innocent citizens, these quasi-officers have unleashed terror on the nation for more than two decades.

Their victims are predominantly young Nigerians profiled on appearance—whether they drive exotic vehicles, use the latest gadgets, have their hair dyed or locked, or have piercings. In some cases, working in tech often gets conflated with financial fraud. For people who don't meet the absurd criteria, the mood of the officer can often become the difference between life and death.

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Emile YX? Wants to 'Reconnect The String'

The father of South African hip-hop's latest book release is here to teach you about the culture.

As a father-figure in South African hip-hop, there's a lot Emile Lester Jansen, aka Emile YX?, knows. He'll also tell you, there's a lot he doesn't. But the knowledge Emile has gained, over his 3 decades in music, he's always tried to share with others. His latest project is no different. The Black Noise founder is working on a book that identifies the similarities between Bushmen expression and hip-hop, and how this knowledge can help empower anyone who has a love of the culture.

The book, which will be called Reconnect The String, comes on the back of this year's 21st anniversary of the African Hip Hop Indaba, one of the landmark hip hop events in Cape Town created by Emile, which has helped many an artist launch their career. As a teacher and a musician, he's long been involved in using hip hop to uplift communities—first through the seminal group Black Noise, founded in the late 1980s, with its rhymes rallying against Apartheid, and then through the Heal the Hood organization, a non-profit that grew out of the group's efforts to use its love of hip hop to fuel youth development initiatives in townships on the Cape Flats.

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Interview: Sango's ‘Da Rocinha 4’ Is a Polished & Grinding Take On Baile Funk

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