#FreetoProtest

Kenya, it is time to reclaim our right!

Our human rights are significantly undermined by restrictive legislation on public order, police brutality on everyday citizens, and negative perceptions of protestors perpetuated by the mainstream media. Protestors are targeted, prosecuted, and attacked by the police just for exercising their democratic and constitutional rights. Whilst the constitution protects the right to protest, there is a lot of progress needed in our institution’s application of these rights and public perception around what these rights mean for people.

Enough is enough.

We are campaigning to bring about positive change in Kenya by demonstrating that the narratives around protests can be shifted.  We are proud to be in a campaign coalition that is maximising the reach and driving a lasting change beyond the end of the campaign. The coalition organises community dialogues, concerts and webinars across the country in areas most affected by violations of protesters.

With such collaborative efforts, we are fighting to:

  1. Promote positive messages of protest and protesters
  2. Challenge negative narratives of protests and protesters, and
  3. Demand better public order management from law enforcement agencies

We bring together members of the community and duty bearers to create a unique opportunity to not only raise awareness about the right to protest but also to raise concerns around the deteriorating state of protests in Kenya and to make recommendations on how to protect and improve the enjoyment our right. Join us!

The #FreeToProtest coalition, made up of grassroots activists and civil society organisations, has been formed to reclaim our right in a respectful and impactful way.

We hope to:

1. Support existing networks dedicated to securing the right to protest in Kenya.
2. Promote positive stories of protests and protestors in Kenya.
3. Demand better practice from the Kenyan police in their responses to protest.

Sign up for the Article 19 monthly newsletter

ARTICLE 19's Statement at the Human Rights Council

ARTICLE 19’s video statement during the adoption of the UPR outcome of Kenya at the 45th Session of the Human Rights Council.

Social Justice Centres and the right to protest

Watch our video on the importance of Social Justice Centres in educating communities about their right to protest.

Protecting our right to protest is important!

Watch our video and join the conversation to help us achieve a fairer, more equal Kenya for everybody.

A grafitti artist paints a pink wall with a print on the back of his t shirt displaying the right to protest text

Join the conversation

It is time to reclaim our democratic human rights in Kenya.

There is great power in numbers, and there is an unprecedented opportunity to join an impactful and respectful movement that can shape the course of Kenyan history for the better. In working together, we can inspire a fairer Kenya to ensure all citizens are #FreeToProtest.

The facts

In 2019, there were 114 protests in Kenya, of which 100 people were arrested and 1 person was killed.

In 2019 85% of protests were non-violent

In the last 12 months (since 2019) the police used force unprovoked 26% of the time

Out of all the protests that took place in 2019, the national newspapers (Daily Nation, The Standard, The Star) only reported on 57% of the protests

In the Sabasaba march on July 7th 2020, over 56 protesters were arrested and detained in different police stations in Nairobi

Latest Activity

Find out the latest activities from our campaign.

protest concert

#Free to protest online concert

Saturday 1st August  2020 at 8pm

View More

#Free to Protest Webinar

Right to freedom of expression in the context of the Covid-19 crisis

June 30th 2020 - 11AM

View More

Kenya: Free To Protest Report 2018-2019

In response to the growing trend of violence against protesters in Kenya, ARTICLE 19 has released a report entitled The Right to Protest in Kenya 2019, which examines the laws, policies and practice around the right to protest.

View More

a man holds up a camera phone from a balcony to film protesters in the street at night time

Documenting protest is crucial for promoting positive narratives about protesters and much more.

Promoting positive narratives about protests and protesters is important

View More