Nairobi — United Kingdom Minister of State for the Armed Forces Rt Hon James Heappey has promised justice to family of Agnes Wanjiru who was allegedly killed by a British soldier in 2012.
Heappey said the British government has nothing to hide insisting that should investigation point to culpability of any individual (s), they will have to take responsibility.
He however regretted the slow pace of investigations promising to work closely with the attorney general to ensure justice to the family of the 21-year-old mother of a 5-month-old daughter who was found murdered after she was reported missing in March 2012.
Her body was retrieved almost 3 months later from a hotel’s septic tank in central Kenya.
According to witness accounts, she had been last seen partying in the company of British soldiers.
“I am not satisfied with the progress that is being made. We want this matter resolved once and for all. We have nothing to hide. If the evidence show that the individual was culpable then he is yours to extradite,” noted Heappey.
He spoke on Wednesday when he paid a courtesy visit to the National Assembly Majority leader Kimani Ichungwah and Majority whip Silvanus Osoro at Parliament Buildings.
Heappey was accompanied by UK Deputy High Commissioner, Josephine Gauld, UK Defence Attache Brigadier Ronnie Westerman, Lt Col Matt Fyjis-Walker and Harriet Bell.
National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah had expressed concern over the unresolved murder of Agnes Wanjiru by British soldiers.
Ichung’wah stated to foster defence cooperation between the two nations, “the sticky issue of Agnes Wanjiru’s death by the British soldiers needed to be addressed”.
To address the prosecution process of those involved in the killing of Wanjiru, the UK Minister for Armed Forces is scheduled to meet with the Attorney General Justin Muturi on Thursday.
Heappey, who is the Conservative MP for Wells, also apologized to Nanyuki residents over the conduct of some military personnel who he said have been so insensitive to host community and their culture. Nanyuki town hosts the British Army Training Unit Kenya (BATUK).
Homicide detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) were set to travel to the UK to interview 14 soldiers who had been staying at the Lion Court Hotel where Agnes was murdered.
This plan was shelved and the DCI instead made a deal to have UK military police conduct the interviews. The investigation process has since gone cold.
On his part the Majority Leader in the National Assembly called for a behaviour change among the British troops operating under British Army Training Unit Kenya (BATUK).
This after the solders were accused of a bushfire in Nanyuki, Laikipia county that led to the death of several wildlife.
The two leaders also spoke on areas of cooperation between the countries’ military forces and the continued operation of BATUK in Nanyuki.
Ichungwah asked the UK government to consider offering Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) specialized training to enable them combat new insecurity threats like Alshabaab, as well as offer support to KDF battalion in a peace keeping mission in Eastern of DRC.
The Majority Leader also pleaded with the UK government to offer scholarships opportunities to children of military officers as a way of motivating them.
He also asked UK through the House of Commons to provide support to Kenyan parliamentary leadership offices and its staff.
Present at the meeting was Majority Whip in the National Assembly Silvanus Osoro.
Heappey was accompanied by UK Deputy High Commissioner to Kenya Josephine Gauld, UK Defence Attache Brigadier Ronnie Western, Lt Col Matt Fyjis-Walker and Harriet Bell.