On April 4, 2018, police reportedly used teargas against staff from the University of Nairobi peacefully protesting outside Kenya’s Ministry of Education, in Nairobi.
The university staff had been marching from the University of Nairobi campus to several government buildings, where they planned to deliver a petition concerning a collective bargaining dispute. The protesters had been demonstrating for several hours when police reportedly launched teargas to disperse them. No injuries have been announced as of this report.
Scholars at Risk is concerned about violence by authorities, targeting academics in an effort to retaliate against and prevent the exercise of the rights to freedom of expression and freedom of assembly — conduct which is expressly protected under international human rights instruments including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. In addition to the harm to the immediate victims, such attacks threaten academic freedom, institutional autonomy, and democratic society generally. State and university authorities have a responsibility to prevent violence on campus, and to investigate and hold accountable perpetrators of such attacks.