Published On: Mon, Jul 25th, 2016

Kenya sends troops to Mombasa to avert Al Shabaab attack

Mombasa county commissioner Mohamed Maalim said security officers are on high alert to avert any disaster, said the Star.

“We are on high alert and we assure citizens that all is well. We are also monitoring all other major installations in Mombasa,” Maalim said as quoted by the paper.

According to him, each ferry will have at least three armed security personnel and ‘many’ plain-clothed detectives.

“Likoni OCS will be fired should he fail to release armed officers to guard ferries,” Maalim said adding “he will just go home if he fails to implement this order”.

A recent intelligence report revealed that Likoni Ferry is vulnerable to terror attacks orchestrated by al Shabaab returning from the war-torn Somalia.

The two waiting bays that accommodate up to 3,000 people each and a parking lot were said to be more susceptible.

A total of four ferries operate at the crossing channel when traffic is at its peak and two at other hours.

Statistics by the Kenya Ferry Service show that about 300,000 commuters and 5,500 motorists use ferries daily.

KFS Managing Director Bakari Gowa said a fully packed ferry accommodates a maximum of 3,000 people and 60 passenger vehicles.

It is not surprising then that the great numbers of civilians assembling at the channel at one particular time makes it a potential target, security experts reckon.

Back in 2014, al Shabaab planned to hit three major installations in Mombasa including the crossing channel.

The attack was to be carried out simultaneously using vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices.

The Star

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