Garissa residents demand answers after two killed, bodies carried away

Fatima Dubow Ibrahim with her two-year-old boy, the wife of Hassan Abdullahi Aden, one of the men killed on Thursday by unknown people in Garissa Town. Relatives of the slain men have demanded for justice. PHOTO | ABDIMALIK HAJIR | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • Two people are said to have been shot dead in hotel and their bodies carried away by the killers. Another two were abducted and taken to an unknown destination.
  • Unknown people, who wore balaclavas and who drove a Toyota Land Cruiser pick-up whose number plates were concealed, stormed Durdur Hotel in Garissa Ndogo ordered everybody to lie down.
  • They left with the two bodies and two other men whom they abducted from the hotel in the dramatic raid that lasted less than 30 minutes.
  • Those killed, according to sources close to the police, were linked to the Somalia-based Al-Shabaab militants.

The mysterious killings of two people in Garissa Town last week have puzzled many including the security agents who are unable to explain the motive behind the shootings.

At the same time, the victims’ relatives have demanded for answers from the government.

On Thursday, two people are said to have been shot dead in hotel and their bodies carried away by the killers. Another two were abducted and taken to an unknown destination.

During the morning incident, unknown people, who wore balaclavas and who drove a Toyota Land Cruiser pick-up whose number plates were concealed, stormed Durdur Hotel in Garissa Ndogo ordered everybody to lie down.

They then proceeded to shoot dead two people.

They left with the two bodies and two other men whom they abducted from the hotel in the dramatic raid that lasted less than 30 minutes.

Leaders and civil society groups condemned the killings which have caused a lot anxiety and fear among residents.

Garissa OCPD Benjamin Ong'ombe confirmed the killings saying his officers went to the scene and found blood stains but could not ascertain the number of people killed as there were no bodies.

INVESTIGATIONS STARTED

He said although they had initiated investigation into the incident, no one, not even family members of the said victims, has come forward to report to the police about the matter.

"It is a complicated matter because no one has seen the bodies of the people said to have been killed but we have initiated investigations into the incident," he told the Nation on Sunday.

Local leaders and human rights groups in the town have given the government one a week ultimatum to produce the bodies of the deceased failure to which they threatened to lead a massive protest in Garissa Town to compel the government to produce them for burial.

Speaking to the journalists on Sunday, family members of the slain men demanded immediate investigations and that action be taken against the people who were involved in the incident.

They were accompanied by members of the civil society groups, Supkem officials and 13 MCAs from Garissa County.

Led by Iftin Ward MCA Mohamed Issack and his Fafi counterpart Mustapha Abdirashid, the leaders claimed that State agents killed innocent citizens which they said was a blatant abuse of the law.

"It is unfortunate that extrajudicial killings are happening in this day and age.

“How can security officers entrusted with safeguarding the lives of the people storm a hotel and proceed to shoot people indiscriminately while they have the option to arrest and present the suspects in court?” wondered the Iftin ward representative.

He said police were taking relatives of the slain man in circles even after reporting the incident.

"The claim from the police that we have not reported the incident is not true because we have with us the report recorded on OB number 22/28/03/2015," he said at a press conference.

Those killed, according to sources close to the police, were linked to the Somalia-based Al-Shabaab militants.

Hassan Abdullahi Adhan who is said to be a victim of circumstances left behind two wives, Fatima Dubow Ibrahim with three children, and Hindiya Ismail with seven children.

Northern Forum for Democracy (NFD) coordinator Mr Khalif Abdi the fight on terrorism could not be won by killing suspects in a country that has laws.

"Killing people in broad daylight itself is creating terror. We want the government to produce these people and explain to us who is behind the killings," he said.

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