In response to Pakistani authorities’ request to the Kenyan Foreign Office for permission to open a new investigation, Kenyan government officials have told Islamabad unequivocally that they will no longer assist the investigations led by Pakistani officials in the Arshad Sharif murder case.
Sources on both parties acknowledged that the Kenyan administration plainly stated on five occasions that it had done enough and will not allow any further investigation in the African country.
They went on to say that Kenyan authorities told their Pakistani counterparts that they had given every assistance possible to two Pakistani investigators Intelligence Bureau’s Omar Shahid Hamid and Federal Investigation Agency’s Dr. Athar Waheed but that they are unwilling to do it again.
“No new investigation will produce a different outcome.” “We helped Pakistan as much as we could, and that’s all,” a high-ranking Kenyan government official remarked.
According to the source, the government, police, and intelligence services are “very upset” about the conclusion drawn in the scathing report by Hamid and Dr. Waheed, namely that there was a strong case of a murder conspiracy leading up to Sharif’s assassination; the Kenyan police’s potential complicity, non-professionalism, and changing statements; a clear case of murder plot cover-up; and a lack of will by Kenyan authorities to properly investigate the murder case.
Three weeks ago, a leading news channel disclosed exclusively that a Kenyan government inquiry determined that the Pakistani journalist’s death was a case of “mistaken identity” and that no murder planning was involved.
According to the Kenyan official assessment, which has yet to be published, Sharif was killed in a random shootout by four members of the paramilitary General Service Unit (GSU) because his driver, Khurram Ahmed, did not halt at the roadblock and there was no murder preparation.
Pakistanis have addressed the Kenyan government since then, requesting that this report be shared with Pakistani authorities, but the Kenyan government has refused.
A five-member bench, led by Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial and comprised of Justices Ijaz ul Ahsan, Muneeb Akhtar, Jamal Khan Mandokhail, and Muhammad Ali Mazhar, heard the suo motu notice and ordered a new investigation.
According to the source, Islamabad has written to Kenya several times since then, citing SC directives, but the Kenyan government has told the authorities that the essential cooperation has already been granted and that the top court’s decisions are Pakistan’s domestic affairs.
The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) appointed by the Supreme Court to investigate Sharif’s murder informed the court in the second week of February that no valid evidence was discovered during their travel to Kenya. They also complained about a lack of cooperation from Kenyan officials.
The crew had traveled to Kenya on the SC’s orders and discovered that it was not permitted to carry out any work and would be in breach of local laws if it went beyond its legal boundaries.
Sharif was shot dead by Kenyan police in October last year while returning to Nairobi from Kenya’s Magadi Town in what they claimed was a “mistaken identity” case.
Kenyan cops claimed they opened fire when the vehicle broke through a barricade. Awais Ahmed, the second JIT leader, has already told the Supreme Court that the team discovered no substantial evidence in Kenya and that the authorities of the foreign countries did not grant access to material in the case.
According to Kenyan reports, Pakistani investigators wanted to examine the incident scene, the AmmoDump camp, and Sharif’s flat, as well as get access to Kenya’s records.
But they were told that none of this was conceivable and that no Kenyan official was willing to volunteer their time to assist the Pakistani investigators. Since then, the Pakistan Foreign Office has approached Kenya’s diplomatic mission and written to Kenya’s Foreign Ministry for assistance but has been told categorically that no further assistance will be provided.
Sharif’s family, friends, and Pakistani media believe he was slain in a pre-planned murder attack in Kenya.