Kenyans win case to sue UK govt. for colonial-era atrocities
Three Kenyans can proceed with their case against the UK government over past abuse.
A British court has confirmed that the three Kenyans can proceed with their case against the UK government over claims of torture and sex abuse, which occurred during the anti-colonial Mau Mau uprising in the African country.
The three people from Kenya, Paulo Muoka Nzili, Wambuga Wa Nyingi and Jane Muthoni Mara now in their 70s and 80s, say they were victims of torture and were sexually assaulted by British colonial officers during the 1950s’ anti-colonial rebellion.
London has been attempting to block the appeal while trying to divert responsibility for the crimes to the government of Kenya, which gained independence in 1963. After that claim was refused in 2011, London then argued against a fair trial saying that too much time had passed since the incident.
The lawyers of the three claimants say that Nzili was castrated, Nyingi was severely beaten and Mara was subjected to violent sex assault in detention camps during the anti-colonial movement. Mara 73 said she was 15 when she was raped at a detention camp.
“I want the British citizens of today to know what their forefathers did to me and to so many others. These crimes cannot go unpunished and forgotten," she said.
Richard McCombe, a high court judge, ruled on Friday 5 October that a fair trial is possible, saying proof from both sides of the case is clear enough to proceed.
"A fair trial for the Kenyans on this part of the case does remain possible and the evidence on both sides does remain significantly cogent for the court to complete its task satisfactorily,” McCombe said.