Jun 26





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Press Statement: Net Rights Coalition Calls on Kenya to Stop Shutting Down the Internet!

Net Rights Coalition Calls on Kenya to Stop Shutting Down the Internet!

We, the Net Rights Coalition (NRC), are appalled by the Internet shutdown which occurred on 25 June 2024, among other human rights violations being unleashed to muzzle protests in Kenya in response to the Finance Bill of 2024. This regrettable turn for Kenya is tantamount to a democratic backslide, considering Kenya has, in the past, had a good reputation for respecting Internet freedom. The protests have been ongoing under the hashtag  #RejectFinanceBill2024, and social media platforms have been facilitating digital activism across a cross-section of the Kenyan population.  As a network promoting digital rights in Africa, we condemn the ongoing alleged human rights violations in the form of arbitrary mass arrests, enforced disappearances, extra-judicial killings, threats against media stations, as well as confirmed Internet Shutdown in the country. 

The empowering nature of the Internet should never be seen as a threat but as an enabling tool for fundamental rights entrenched in the Kenyan Constitution to thrive. Articles 33, 35, and 37 of the Kenyan Constitution protect freedom of expression, access to information, and the right to protest, which are key rights in any democratic society. These rights are currently imperilled by the conduct of the government through its crackdown actions. The NRC reminds Kenya’s government of its obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, which guarantees the mentioned rights. 

We also remind the government of Kenya of Principle 38(2) of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights Declaration of Principles on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information in Africa, which states that States shall not engage in or condone any disruption of access to the internet and other digital technologies for segments of the public or an entire population. This blatant violation of human rights is not justifiable or compatible with international human rights laws and standards. Furthermore, we advise all Internet Service Providers in Kenya of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which outline the corporate responsibility of corporations to respect human rights. In this light, disclosing any government orders to shut down the Internet is a show of responsibility and commitment towards human rights.    

As such, we demand the following:

  • The government of Kenya to stop all arbitrary actions against the ongoing protests, including arbitrary arrests and enforced disappearances.
  • The government of Kenya to immediately cease Internet shutdowns and restore full access to the Internet and social media
  • Internet Service Providers to disclose information concerning any government orders for internet shutdowns. 




  1. Paradigm Initiative (PIN)
  2. E-Governance and Internet Governance Foundation for Africa (EGIGFA)
  3. Centre for Youth Empowerment and Leadership (CYEL) –
  4. Human Rights Journalists Network Nigeria 
  5. West African Digital Rights Defenders coalition 
  6. GoVote Nigeria
  7. Bloggers of Zambia (BloggersZM)
  8. Afia-Amani Grands-Lacs
  9. Digital Action
  10. TechHer
  11. Jonction, Senegal
  12. African Academic Network on Internet Policy (AANOIP) 
  13. Koneta Hub
  14. Internet Society South Sudan Chapter
  15. Consortium of Ethiopian Human Rights Organizations (CEHRO)
  16. Youth and Society (YAS)
  17. Women of Uganda Network (WOUGNET)
  18. Brain Builders Youth Development Initiative
  19. FactCheck Africa 
  20. Index on Censorship
  21. Derechos Digitales, Latin America
  22. DigiCivic Initiative.

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