Police corruption steering Al Shabaab raids in Kenya
Politicians from terror prone Mandera county have attributed sporadic attacks by al Shabaab terrorists to endemic corruption by security forces.
They said the government has failed to deal with the insurgency in the area because “money-hungry elements” within security agencies were frustrating concerted efforts.
The leaders included Senator Billow Kerrow, MPs Mohammed Mohamud (Mandera West), Fathia Mahbub (woman representative), Nohame Huka (Mandera East), Hassan Osman (Nominated), Barry Shill (Fafi) and Mohamed Elmi (Tarbaj).
They issued the remarks following an attack at dawn on Tuesday at a Mandera hotel during which 12 non-locals were killed.
Mohamud fired a salvo at the DCI Ndegwa Muhoro accusing his officers of arresting suspects and then extorting money from them in exchange for their freedom.
“Muhoro and his officers have failed this country. They drive Probox vehicles and arrest people. and then demand money from them for them to be released,” he claimed.
“Those who don’t part with cash are threatened with death,” he continued, adding Mandera has enough security personnel.
Governor Ali Roba said this earlier and noted the problem as fear by security officers to carry out patrols.
Kerrow said the government must change its strategy for fighting the al Qaeda-linked terror group as the “attacks have become one too many in the last three months”.
“The attacks are similar in design and execution, targeting areas with a high concentration of non-locals. They are similar because they happen at around 2am yet security agents have failed to stop these senseless and barbaric attacks,” he said.
The Senator said leaders from the region stand with all Kenyans against cowardly attacks whose primary aim is division along tribal lines.
“Mandera is in Kenya yet you find terrorists crossing the border freely and roaming the town with ease. But security agencies claim they are on top of is happening,” he said.
Kerrow supported the construction of a security wall along the Kenya-Somalia border to keep terrorists at bay and seal the porous border.
“The government has said it knows all the symphatisers. We want security forces to arrest and arraign them in court,” he said.
“What stops the government from arresting them? Nothing… as long as whatever it does is within the law.”
Fafi MP Barry Shill blamed security forces for the attack saying they could have deployed security to the hotel when they learned it had many Christians.
“We have been hearing that the government is trying to chest –thumb that it will build a wall. Where is that wall? We have corruption within security forces; it is true that people have extorted money,” he said.