Chris Kaba: Family of unarmed man shot dead by police officer calls for nationwide protests

·2-min read

The family of an unarmed black man who was shot dead by a police officer last week in south London is calling for protests across the country this weekend as his relatives continue to demand justice.

Chris Kaba, 24, was killed last Monday after a police chase in Streatham Hill.

Jefferson Bosela, Mr Kaba's cousin and the family's spokesperson, confirmed there would be another march planned in London this weekend while "issuing a national call to action", encouraging people to hold their own demonstrations in other locations.

"I know people want to show their support and solidarity, so we're going to pretty much give them our blessing, as long as it's peaceful and as long as it's non-violent," he told Sky News.

"Chris died as a result of violence, so we believe that it would be hypocritical of any type of protest that results in violence," Mr Bosela added.

Mr Kaba, who was engaged and due to be a father, was stopped by firearms officers after his car was flagged by a number plate recognition camera.

It has since emerged the police did not discover a firearm at the scene, and that the car was not registered to Mr Kaba.

Last week, the Independent Office for Police Conduct which is looking into the incident opened a homicide inquiry, while on Monday the Metropolitan Police officer who shot Mr Kaba has been suspended from duty.

The Met's Assistant Commissioner Amanda Pearson said: "This decision has been reached following careful consideration of a number of factors, including the significant impact on public confidence, and in light of the IOPC announcing a homicide investigation.

"Our thoughts and sympathies remain with Mr Kaba's family and friends. We understand how concerned communities are, particularly black communities, and thank those who are working closely with our local officers."

She added that the decision to suspend the officer "does not determine the outcome of the IOPC investigation".

'They took a very lax approach'

However, Mr Bosela feels the investigation into the case has "lacked urgency".

"We've asked the IOPC some very basic questions, that they should have known from the outset.

"For people who are demanding justice and taking this really serious, it looked like they took a very lax or laissez-faire approach and that's something that's almost added insult to injury and that's really hurtful."

Mr Bosela, who left his job as a teacher this week to campaign full time, said he has not properly had the time to grieve, adding the hardest day so far was watching Chris's mother Helen Nkama break down at a candelit vigil organised at the scene of the incident yesterday.

"I literally can't sleep, I'm just thinking about his last moments," said Mr Bosela.

"I don't think the police officer who pulled the trigger has understood how many lives he's impacted, and how many lives he's destroyed."