Tuesday, September 09, 2008


Suspected Somali raiders attacked a Kenyan border camp killing five people, a Kenyan police official said today.

The heavily armed raiders struck the camp near the border town of Mandera on Sunday, killing three civilians and two police officers. They stole four rifles and around 250 rounds of ammunition, said area police commander Christopher Okello.

"They killed five people, injured seven others and torched houses," Okello said. "We suspect they were raiders from neighbouring Somalia. We are pursuing them but so far, no recovery has been made."

The Kenya-Somalia border has been insecure since the Somali government collapsed in 1991, setting off civil war and unrest that has defied numerous attempts to restore peace. In the Sundays' incident, Two Administration Police officers and three other people were killed when The heavily armed militiamen (bandits) raided their camp in Mandera District. The raiders, said to be from Somalia's Elwak, also seriously injured another civilian during the 5am incident on Sunday. In the ensuing melee they stole four G3 rifles and 200 bullets belonging to Administration Policemen attached to the centre.
Mandera police boss Christopher Akello Odhiambo confirmed the deaths and loss of the firearms, saying the APs manning the centre were overwhelmed and appealed to area residents to volunteer information that would lead to the arrest of the bandits. Mr Akello said the security officers were caught unawares as the raiders surrounded them and fired indiscriminately. The two other officers whose guns the raiders made away with escaped on foot and ran for 30 km to Lafey along the Kenya-Somali border.

The porous border is insecure and residents have from time to time appealed the Government to deploy Military to secure the borders. Police posts are scarecely manned with few AP's, say 4-5 manning a whole location. The raiders also unsuccessfully tried to bomb a well that has been at the centre of controversy between the Gare and the Murule clans.
Their aim as North Eastern PC Josephat Maingi and PPO Stephen Chelimo claim was to create anxiety between the two clans. The PC and PPO together with ODM Mandera East MP Mohamed Hussein(Qaras) plus Safina's MP for Mandera Central Abdikadir flew to the area yesterday morning to help quell the tension.

The raiders, suspected to have entered Kenya from Somalia, fled with four G3 rifles and more than 200 rounds of ammunition when they hit the camp in Alungu location. Other Reports indicated the bandits were hired by leaders of a clan that has been involved in a dispute with another, over the Mandera Central District boundary. Houses were also burnt during the incident.
Mandera Central was curved from Mandera East in 1988 during the KANU era. Witnesses said the raiders were more than 50. Following the raid, the Government dispatched Military security personnel in the area. Mandera police boss Akello Odhiambo appealed to area residents to volunteer information that would lead to the arrest of the bandits.