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Ijara: 20-year-old herder sustain multiple injuries after he mistook an explosive for a ball



[The Star]

GARISSA—A 20-year-old herder is nursing wounds in a hospital after an abandoned explosive injured him in Ijara, Garissa County.

Mohamed Wario said he was herding goats in the Dadwesa area when he found a round metallic object and assumed that it was a ball and started playing with it when it exploded.

As a result, he sustained multiple injuries on his hands, right cheek and forehead. He was rushed to ljara Level IV Hospital where he was admitted in a serious condition in March 29 incident.

Police said they can’t tell if the object was abandoned by terrorists or security agencies operating in the area.

Ijara Deputy County Commissioner Willy Cheboi called upon security personnel to keep up-to-date inventory to avoid such incidents from reoccurring, noting that they may result in fatalities.

Cases of abandoned grenades found by residents have been reported in the past, with a similar case recorded on March 14.

A herder, 21, in Mandera East, Mandera County, was injured while trying to break an abandoned grenade.

Intrigued by the unusual object, he used a stone to try and break it before it exploded on his face resulting in serious injuries.

In another fatal incident reported in 2022, two children were killed by the impact of an explosion after attempting to play with a grenade.

Police concluded that suspected terrorists from Somalia abandoned the explosives in the region along the border.

“We have deployed experts to asses the area for any abandoned explosives to avoid such accidents. We will also educate the public on how to handle the objects,” stated North Eastern police commander George Seda.

Dozens of herders are usually injured in such incidents out of curiosity. This is after they pick and try to play with them.

The area is near the main Kenya-Somalia border which is usually breached by al-Shabaab terrorists who attack at will.

Terrorists have been targeting security installations in a series of incidents and destroying them. They at times throw explosives, which don’t explode.

The border region has borne the brunt of repeated attacks from the militants who are at times aided by residents.

The terrorists at times plant explosives on the routes used by security agencies and attack them.

Somalia has not had a stable government after the fall of Siad Barre in 1991.


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