Kenya’s top ranking university has been shut down indefinitely

The closure may be an attempt by the University to disrupt a major demonstration which was supposed to take place on Tuesday to protest police brutality.

The University of Nairobi (UoN) has been closed indefinitely and students ordered to immediately vacate halls of residence.

According to the University’s twitter handle, the university has been shut down and students ordered to immediately vacate the campus but no later than 9am.

The University Senate cited security concerns as the reason to close the institution, according to the Director of Corporate Affairs John Orindi.

"We will announce when the institution will re-open," said Mr. Orindi.

A section of Kenyans and student leaders have however faulted the move to close the institution saying they were not consulted and it would disrupt their learning.

Students at the University of Nairobi had called on all Kenyan campuses to join them in a countrywide demo to take place on October 3, 2017, protesting against the police brutality witnessed last week during demos.

Last Thursday, university students held a demo demanding the release of Embakasi Member of Parliament who is also a former student leader, Babu Owino who had been arrested on subversion charges and uttering abusive words.

The protest left 27 students nursing serious injurious.

General Service Unit riot police, however, invaded the campus hostels and lecture halls to quell the protests.

An amateur video circulating across social media showed the police brutally beating up students in their halls of residence while others were forced to frog march at gunpoint at the institution.

Some students were even sexually abused and others forced to pay bribes to secure their release according to student’s accounts.

University grounds are considered a safe haven for students and Students and scholars felt the police had trespassed the institution and committed human rights abuses in the process.

Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet however on Sunday night during an interview with a local media house mentioned that the police were allowed inside the institution by the administration itself.

As a result, the students are calling for the eviction of the Campus Vice Chancellor Professor Peter Mbithi according to the circular.

The Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA) has appealed to the over 20 students who were injured by police during demonstrations not to leave the University before recording statements at its Upper Hill Offices in Nairobi for investigations and action taken to the police officers found guilty of using excessive force to quell last week's demos at the university.


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