Published On: Mon, May 22nd, 2017

Kenya to lift Mandera curfew near Somali border

Kenyan government has pledged to lift the dusk to dawn curfew on Mandera town on the Somalia border to allow residents to perform the Ramadan prayers in the night as the Muslim fasting month is due to commence next weekend, Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto said.

Speaking in an election campaign rally on Sunday in Mandera, Deputy President Ruto said that the government will increase the number of armed police officers in the town by recruiting additional 150 police officers.

“We are ready to employ 150 KPRs within this month because we want to have a secure Mandera.” Kenyan Deputy President Ruto told Mandera residents on Sunday as his announcement received warm welcome by jubilant residents.

In the past months, local Muslim Clerics, elders and businesspeople advocated for the curfew lifted because of the Holy Muslim Month approaching.

Two weeks ago, local politicians met President Uhuru Kenyatta in Nairobi as part of his re-election bid and demanded the curfew in Mandera removed. The President promised to review the Mandera politicians appeal.

“We want to have a secure Mandera so that people can go on with their daily business uninterrupted.” Mr. Ruto added.

The curfew in Mandera was imposed in October last year for a period of five months, following attacks by the militant group Al-Shabab. The country’s Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaisery increased again as a result of the threats posed by the terror group.

But locals blamed the curfew affected the business and the night movement of the ordinary citizens negatively rather than improving the security as the militant group’s attacks continued to happen in the county.

Last week, a local chief was shot and killed and two police officers were kidnapped after an overnight raid by the militants on Omar Jillo village in Mandera County.

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