KAMPALA — A Kenyan award winning journalist Patrick Mayoyo, reports having received threats from people suspected to be involved in two stories he had written about recent mysterious deaths of two female journalists and those of many others before them.
Mr. Mayoyo, whose several investigative reports have led to widespread investigations in which senior officials in Kenya have been arrested says he is being tormented by people he believes to be state security agents because of his professional work.
“And consequently, I fear for my life,” he wrote in an emotional letter sent to Article 19, a human rights organisation with a specific mandate and focus on the defence and promotion of freedom of expression and freedom of information worldwide founded in 1987.
He adds: “I am constantly being trailed and my daily activities monitored by a network of people. I am being terrorised by strangers who take me photographs on the streets without my authority among other violations”.
Mayoyo also claims he has suffered three separate incidents of toxic substances being put in his drink or food since December for reasons best known by those administering the substances, a development he says is contributing to the deterioration of his health.
The alleged threats against Mr. Mayoyo began and intensified after he authored and published two stories namely Opinion: World Press Freedom Day: Who killed them and why? that raises concerns about rising cases of journalists being killed or going missing.
The other story was tittled Kenya on the global radar over poaching and trade in wildlife products that spotlights rampant poaching and trade in wildlife products.
Mayoyo says several people unknown to him started trailing his movements and ‘I fear of my life now”.
He also believes the same people are illegally tapping his telephone conversations and emails.
“I believe that journalism is not a crime but a profession protected under the International Declaration on the Protection of Journalists, he says.
“I want the dubious activities against me by security agents stopped with immediate effect and my safety and security guaranteed,” hw wrote, adding that he believes these intensified violations against him are an intrusion on his fundamental rights as protected by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
He claims the security agents terrorizing him are led by a one Shuria, whom he says is a police officer.
He has since requested Article19 to study the matter.