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 inCapital 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 Harry Langer/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Sadio Mane Ruled Out of the World Cup Through Injury

The 30-year-old forward Sadio Mané was earlier scheduled to join Senegal's squad for the World Cup.

Just last week, news broke that Sadio Mane would be joining his squad in Qatar for the World Cup, but due to his leg injury, that will no longer happen.

The BBC reports that, after an MRI scan was completed on Thursday, medical professionals determined that further surgical intervention is needed on Mane's injury.

On Friday (November 11th), it was announced that Mane will be on the Senegal team for the World Cup in Qatar, despite the fact he suffered recent injuries while playing against SV Werder Bremen in Germany. Mane had an injury that caused damage to his right fibula.

The star Senegalese footballer, who is 30, made headlines earlier this year for kicking his team to the Africa Cup of Nations. He also had a decisive penalty kick for the World Cup qualification, and is considered one of the most prolific African players of all time. Senegalese coach Aliou Cissé, who previously named Mane among the 26-man squad that would represent Senegal, had said he was confident that Mane could recover from his injuries in time to play at the tournament.

At the time, Cissé had also shared that the chosen players were selected because they were in line with the team's principles.

"The players chosen correspond with our vision and philosophy. They are competitors of a high level," Cissé told Al Jazeera.

Previously, Cissé had said the team sent the federation's doctor to examine Mane's leg but was informed that the star footballer would not need any surgery to recover. Cissé said he was pleased with the feedback because he would prefer to keep Mane on the team for the big game.

"That's very good news, and we now have the chance to try and get him fit for the tournament. We now have two weeks to observe and see how the injury reacts to treatment," Cissé, whose contract as a coach was extended by two years earlier this week, said. "I prefer to keep him in the squad because he is such an important part of us. We will do all in our power to ensure we can recover Mane in time to play."

In light of the recent developments, Man has been ruled out of playing the big tournament.

All You Need to Know About the African Teams at the World Cup

We break down how Senegal, Ghana, Cameroon, Morocco, and Tunisia's national teams are looking ahead of the Qatar World Cup 2022.

African football has come a long way.

Egypt was the first African team to ever participate in a FIFA World Cup. They did it in Italy in 1934, where they only played a game, which they lost 4-2 to Hungary. Back then, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) didn’t exist, so the Pharaohs played two qualifier games against British Palestine.

CAF was eventually formed in 1956, but the World Cup would only see another African team in Mexico 1970, when Morocco qualified. Years later, Pelé, the legendary Brazilian player, predicted that an African team would win a World Cup before the year 2000, he was mocked mercilessly. For many, it was not an unlikely outcome, it was an absurd proposition.

And yet, African footballers have become more and more often part of the footballing elite, playing in the best leagues, and becoming some of the most famous players. While, still, only European and South American teams have won World Cups.

Keep reading...Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox


Listen to Fatoumata Diawara's New Single 'Nsera' Featuring Damon Albarn

The celebrated Malian artist will release a fuller body of work in the Spring of 2023.

Lojay Releases Amapiano-Infused Anthem 'Canada'

Nigeria's rising star Lojay recently dropped a new single called "Canada."

Senegal Is Hosting This Year's All African Awards

The 8th installment of the All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) is making its return in Senegal this year.

Emily Nkanga is the Photographer with a Human Touch

She's photographed the likes of Joeboy, Olamide, and Wizkid but the Nigerian-born artist also prides herself on images that show how people in different communities live.


Burna Boy, Tems, Zakes Bantwini, Eddy Kenzo & More Are Nominated For 2023 Grammy Awards

They are joined by Angélique Kidjo, Rocky Dawuni, Nomcebo Zikode and more African artists on the nominees list for next year's Grammy Awards.