UNICEF has launched investigations into an incident where one of their employees is said to have stormed a private post-wedding party at an apartment in Nairobi and assaulted the host and her guests.
This comes after Thogori Karago, took to social media narrated how she rented an AirBnB in High View area, Ridgeways, on September 12, 2020 to host friends and family for a post-wedding meal for her brother.
According to Ms. Karago, they were having a vote of thanks speech at around 8:30pm to conclude when the said UNICEF employee – later identified as Philip Van de Graaf – stormed in shouting and telling them it was curfew time and that they had to exit the premises.
“As the person renting the premises I asked the gentleman who initially failed to identify himself or request entry onto our property or provide his name and details and purpose. However, much to my dismay he refused to disclose and continued shouting and addressing me and my friends aggressively,” she narrated.
“Upon his close approach on my porch and personal space I asked him to calm down and step away as he continued to shout verbal abusive words and racial slurs towards me and my friends. Thereafter, he realised he was being recorded by several people hurling verbally abusive language and he began to attack — pushing and hitting those who tried to protect themselves.”
He reportedly destroyed their property on the porch before bringing out his guard dog, upon which Ms. Karago and her entourage locked themselves in the house and called officers from the Muthaiga Police Station.
They were assigned two police officers who confronted Mr. de Graaf but he allegedly denied all the offenses leveled against him, only identifying himself as a UNICEF employee.
“It has also come to our attention after engaging several staff at the premises he has a history of substance abuse, hurling racially verbally abusive language and using his dogs against the guards assigned,” added Ms. Karago.
In videos attached by Ms. Karago, Mr. de Graaf can at various points be seen engaging in a physical scuffle with the men at the party who attempt to throw him off the property but he keeps returning and hurling curse words at them.
UNICEF Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa, Mohamed Fall, now says a probe has kicked off into the Saturday incident.
“UNICEF has launched an investigation into events from Saturday inthat have been shown on social media. We have been in Kenya for many years, and both our country and regional offices are warmly hosted by the Government of Kenya,” he said.
“Throughout that time, we have all enjoyed the warmth and friendship of the Kenyan people, for which we are most grateful. At all times we expect impeccable behaviour from our staff, as they go about their critical and life-saving work for children throughout the region.”