A senior Pakistani journalist and TV host Arshad Sharif was shot dead Sunday night along the Nairobi-Magadi highway in what police termed a “mistaken identity.”
According to local media reports, Sharif was shot in the head and killed by police after he and his driver allegedly breached a roadblock that had been set up to check on motor vehicles on the route.
His driver was also injured in the incident.
They were driving from Magadi town to Nairobi when they were flagged down at a roadblock being manned by a group of police officers, police said.
According to police, at the roadblock, the police were supposed to intercept a car similar to the one Sharif and his driver were driving, following a carjacking incident in the Pangani area, Nairobi where a child was taken, hostage.
Earlier, Sharif’s wife Javeria Siddique said on Twitter: “I lost friend, husband and my favourite journalist @arsched today, as per police he was shot in Kenya.”
“Respect our privacy and in the name of breaking please don't share our family pics, personal details, and his last pictures from the hospital. Remember us in your prayers,” she added.
“Arshad Sharif’s death is a great loss to journalism and Pakistan. May his soul rest in peace and may his family, which includes his followers, have the strength to bear this loss,” President Arif Alvi tweeted.
Sharif worked for the local English daily Dawn and later hosted a popular political show at ARY News, a local broadcaster, for several years.
-Sharif left for Dubai-
Sharif had left the country first for Dubai and later London in August after his channel parted ways with him, without citing any specific reason, following the ouster of former Prime Minister Imran Khan through a no-trust vote in April.
Sharif and other ARY officials were charged with sedition over a controversial interview with Shahbaz Gill, a leader of Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party, which was broadcast on the channel in August. Gill was later arrested and released on bail.
Meanwhile, Kenya's Independent Police Oversight Authority (Ipoa) says it has launched investigations into the killing of Pakistani journalist Arshad Sharif.
Its head, Ann Makori, has told journalists in the capital, Nairobi, that a rapid response team has been sent to investigate the killing of the journalist.
Sharif was known to be a staunch supporter of Khan and openly criticized the alleged role of state institutions in his ouster.