A six-month-old girl has died in Kenya, her doctor told Reuters on Tuesday, after her parents said she was teargassed and clubbed by police in a security crackdown following last week’s disputed elections.
Samantha Pendo had been asleep in her mother’s arms when police forced their way into their home and beat her and her parents as they searched for protesters, her parents said.
Police have said they are investigating the incident in the western city of Kisumu.
According to the mother police lobbed tear gas cannisters into their home at 2am on Saturday during house-to-house raids following the post-election protests.
“One of the guy beat me and the other one came with that stick on them, hit the baby. Then I left the baby off of my hand because she did not cry, I did not feel any movement with the baby. I said screaming, she was dead,” said Lenzer Achieng mother to the infant.
The infant’s story emerged on Saturday morning as police denied claims of using excessive force to quell protests.
“At the time of admission the child was critically ill and had already lapsed into coma. So we did what we are supposed to do and we admitted the baby into ICU where she remains quite sick, quite, still critical. The medical team is doing its best in terms of turning this baby around, but she remains quite critical,” said Aga Khan Hospital’s medical director, Dr Sam Oula.
Meanwhile, the Kenya National Human Rights Commission had claimed that 24 people had been killed in the chaos in Nairobi and Kisumu.