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Two suspects in custody over Mandera bus attack

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Wajir County Commissioner, Lyford Kibara addressing the Press outside Wajir mortuary alongside other leaders.

WAJIR—Two people were on Sunday arrested in connection with the Friday bus attack where 11 people lost their lives in Al Shabab attack.

Confirming the arrest, Wajir County Commissioner Lyford Kibara said the suspects—bus driver and conductor—are in custody for questioning.

“The two were in constant communication with an unidentified person who made suspicious movements,” Kibara said.

Seven police officers returning from leave were among the eleven people killed on Friday evening by a contingent of Al Shabab militants who waylaid a bus heading to Mandera at Wargadud village in Wajir County.

Kibara stated that the ill-fated bus—Medina Bus—was attacked by at least seven militants who targeted non-local passengers.

“There (Al Shabab) aim is to create hostilities among locals and other Kenyan communities,” Kibara said.

Eleven bodies were last night received at the mortuary in Wajir County Referral Hospital.

The seven police officers who lost their lives in the attack were away on leave and returning to resume duty at their station in Rhamu.

The officers who lost their lives in the attack are:

CPL Athanus Kiti of police number 86572

PC Enos Odhiambo of police number 114365

PC Kevin Mandela of police number 116155

PC Wisely Meli of police number 116135

PC Tikane Kasale of police number 114968

PC Francis Mbuvi of police number 109057

Three civilians among them Rodgers Machuka, a medical practitioner based in Mandera and Leonard Mukanda and one unnamed teacher were also killed in the attack.

Two police officers—Emmanuel Barasa of police number 115425 and Nathan Bett of police number 114571—are believed to be missing, but Commisoner Kibara maintains only one is unaccounted for. 

“We can not say his whereabouts…We have to check the manifest to ascertain if he actually traveled with the fallen officer from Nairobi,” Kibara said.

Speaking after long security meeting with the County Commissioner, Wajir leaders led by the County Governor Mohamed Abdi condemned the attack, calling it cowardly. They also condoled with the bereaved families who lost loved ones in the attack.

“They are not Muslims and their version of Islam misleading. I urge them to come back to the community and integrate,” Eldas MP, Aden Keynan said.

Mandera Governor, similarly condemned the attack. He called on the security apparatus to do more to secure live and property in the region.

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