Kisauni MP’s stepbrother among two terror suspects killed by police

Family, friends and residents of Bakarani, Kisauni, carry the body of Salim Hanjary Bedzimba, who was shot dead on Thursday evening alongside Kibwana Ahmed Abdalla, alias Rajab, after police raided a house in the area. Mr Hanjary was Kisauni MP Rashid Bedzimba's stepbrother. PHOTO | WACHIRA MWANGI | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • Salim Hanjary Bedzimba, Kisauni MP Rashid Bedzimba, was shot alongside Kibwana Ahmed Abdalla, alias Rajab, after police raided the house and recovered three hand-grenades.
  • He was described by Kisauni police as a dangerous terror suspect who had been on the run.
  • During the Thursday evening raid, police said the two were with others, who ran away with bullet wounds. 

A close relative of Kisauni MP Rashid Bedzimba is among two terror suspects shot dead by police in the Junda area of the constituency in Mombasa County on Thursday evening.

Salim Hanjary Bedzimba, the MP’s stepbrother, was described by Kisauni police as a dangerous terror suspect who had been on the run.

He was shot alongside Kibwana Ahmed Abdalla, alias Rajab, after police raided the house and recovered three hand grenades.

During the Thursday evening raid, police said they found the two with others, who ran away with bullet wounds. 

Security sources indicated that police believe one of the two suspects said to have escaped was Ismail Shosi, who has been on the list of wanted terror fugitives since last year.

Police described Mr Hanjary as “a most-wanted terror suspect’’ who was among those who had escaped police dragnets in Majengo and Malindi in early January this year.

Kisauni deputy OCPD Walter Abondo said at the scene that 17 rounds of ammunition, three liquid explosives, four plastic explosives and four bomb detonators were also seized from the house.

LED MOURNERS

On Friday, Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho led mourners, including the MP, at the slain man's family home in Bakarani.

The governor defended the man, claiming he was innocent and that police had planted the grenades and other items said to have been found on him.

“We have information that police planted those things that they are claiming to have recovered from the deceased’s house. We will not allow police to continue with these killings of innocent people,” Mr Joho said.

He added: “We are pained by these killings. Personally I can feel the pain,’’ he said, and demanded that the national government take responsibility for the killings of "innocent" people.

Governor Joho indicated that Mombasa County leaders and members of civil society would hold demonstrations to protest the killing of Mr Hanjary and others by police, “because we are tired.’’

CRIMINAL GROUP

On Friday morning, police shot dead a young man who they said was a member of a criminal group terrorising people in Kisauni. He was killed at Soko Mjinga, which is notorious for crime.

Another man, identified as Abdi Galgalo, 42, was fighting for his life at Coast General Hospital after he was hit by a stray bullet, which was still lodged in his chest.

On Wednesday, a 27-year-old trader was also hit by a stray bullet after boda boda riders clashed with police in Likoni constituency.

Emily Akinyi, who was hit in the abdomen, is still nursing her wound at the hospital.

On Friday, Mr Abondo said the man shot dead at Soko Mjinga and who was not immediately identified, had attacked two women.

“The two women were heading to Kongowea Market when the youth attacked them and wanted to rob them; our police who were on a normal morning patrol caught the youth red-handed and pursued them,” said Mr Abondo.

RECKLESSNESS

Before attending Mr Hanjary's burial, Mr Joho accused the police of being reckless when they conduct their raids. 

He condemned all the killings, saying “life is life even if the deceased is related to the MP". 

“Even those who were shot by stray bullets have families and we will not entertain this," said an angry Joho.

“The work of the police is to protect and not [harm people].”

He described as a "propagandist" Coast Regional Coordinator Nelson Marwa, who on Wednesday said the operation to smoke out criminal gangs in Kisauni would continue.

Mr Marwa had said: “We are going to go there incognito and deal with those youth. We will not allow this to happen to our youths when we have all it takes to deal with these gangs”.

But while responding to questions from journalists, Mr Joho dismissed Mr Marwa's comments, saying: “We care for Mombasa more than they do. Why does Kisauni seem to be the only place being targeted? They cannot tell us that they do love Mombasa more than us,” he said.

(Editing by Basillioh Mutahi and Henry Gekonde)

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