Nairobi's Mlango Kubwa MCA Patricia Mutheu was introduced to most Kenyans on Tuesday, July 28, when she was assaulted by several policemen at the County Assembly of Nairobi in the full glare of cameras.
She was descended on as MCAs attempted to serve assembly Speaker Beatrice Elachi with a court order suspending the appointment of the Clerk of the County Assembly, as well as an impeachment motion signed by 59 ward representatives.
A badly injured Mutheu has since called for the four police officers to be sacked, even as the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji promised to pursue the case.
Unknown to many, however, Mutheu is more than an MCA, having risen from being an exceptional child in Mathare, Nairobi, to a tech guru and influential community worker.Police officers clobber Mlango Kubwa MCA Patricia Mutheu at City Hall on Tuesday, July 28.File
At 10 years of age, Mutheu was already a peer educator and youth leader.
She became one of the first ever students of NairoBits, a respected organisation that trains youth in Nairobi's lower-income informal settlements, helping them develop important technological skills.
An entrepreneur, Mutheu started up her own business of designing shirts for sale after she joined university in 2002.
She immersed herself into the tech world after completing her studies, joining a leading digital agency as an Intern in 2006 before being promoted to Web Developer.
At the same time, Mutheu ran her own company on the side and designed websites for corporate clients.
Mutheu also remained active in social work, and founded Convict Women, an organisation meant to protect vulnerable women in the country's prison system. She also worked with various women groups in Mathare to train members on practical skills.
In 2017, Mutheu ran for the Mlango Kubwa MCA seat on a Jubilee Party ticket and saw off stiff competition to emerge victorious.
Her tenure so far has been marked with involvement with various youth and women groups as well as lobbying for projects such as roads in her ward. She has, however, been accused of hiring friends and relatives by a section of her constituents.
Some of her critics have also previously described her as 'a tourist' in Mlango Kubwa claiming she is rarely seen in the area.
The incident involving Mutheu fuelled debate on police brutality and extra-judicial killings in Kenya, with tensions already high following recent protests in counties including in Nairobi, Nandi, Kisii and Elgeyo Marakwet over alleged police killings.
Many citizens questioned what it meant for their interactions with police if an elected representative could be assaulted so brutally.
DPP Haji noted in a statement issued on Wednesday, July 29, that he had directed the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA) to carry out investigations into the matter and forward resultant file to his office for appropriate direction.
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