Sunday, November 06, 2022
KENYA, NAIROBI: The mystery around the murder of senior Pakistani journalist and anchorperson deepens as the investigators fail to find a solution while contradictions in the facts stated by the Kenyan police and media also surface.
Arshad Sharif was shot dead by the Kenyan police on the night of October 23 in a “mistaken identity” case while he was travelling to Nairobi from the country’s Magadi town in Kenya.
This correspondent has visited Magadi Road, the crime scene where Sharif was shot dead in a hail of bullets when he just entered the road coming from Kwenia, an area known for the conservation of the endangered Rüppell’s vulture.
As the investigations go deeper, it emerged that the police statements not only contradict each other but are completely different from what the locals say.
The locals told Geo News that Sharif's car was coming from the opposite direction of what the suspected car — involved in the "kidnap case" — that the police awaited was supposed to come from.
They said that the police had taken the position to fire on three different spots surrounding the crime scene long before the car even reached.
The locals shared that several vehicles passed from the crime scene just by the Kamukuru and AmmoDump signboards on the junction of Magadi Road and feeder road coming from Kwenia which Sharif’s driver used to enter the road to take a turn to go towards Tinga market, on way to Nairobi around three hours away.
As per the locals, Sharif's car came from the direction of Kwenia where the shooting range AmmoDump is — which is left from the place of incident — and was supposed to move on the road leading to its right where a sign board saying "Kamakru" stands.
The midpoint of the two roads was where the police had set up the "checkpoint" and where Sharif was shot dead by the General Services Unit (GSU) officers.
In the initial version of the statement, the Kenyan police said that they were looking for a car carrying an "abducted child" but the locals said that police themselves said that the "car" was supposed to come from the right as per their intelligence. Sharif’s car came from a completely different direction from Kwenia’s jungle where there is no chance of anyone being kidnapped as the nearest tribe lives around 40 minutes away in dire poor conditions.
Meanwhile, not even Kenyan media has yet reported anything about the spot where the police had taken the position to shoot, as stated by the locals.
Moreover, as per the investigators' analysis the nature of the bullet marks on the car carrying Sharif, doesn't seem like the fire was opened on a moving vehicle.
Geo News found that there is a town called Tapasi, at a distance of half-an-hour by car from the place of incident, which is where Khurram Ahmed — the person accompanying Sharif on the night of murder — drove the car to after the shooting and where the police finally recovered the car.
Local villagers, through a translator, told this reporter that they didn’t see any roadblocks on a fateful evening but did see GSU officers taking positions. They said they had never seen the local police erecting barricades at the quiet road, which is connected to the feeder road.
They said the local police used sharp spikes to block roads and they didn’t see spikes being erected that night.