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Kenya: Controversy as officer is ‘rescued’ from Mandera jail

Unit (RDU) officers walked into Mandera Town Police Station with a mission unknown to officers there.

The station was calm because the night deployment had already been done, according to an officer who spoke to the Nation in confidence.

The station’s boss, station guard, the cell sentry and an officer manning the report desk were all present when the unexpected visitors arrived.

A source said the arrival of the 14 officers drawn from the administration police did not attract much of the station guard’s attention.

ON A MISSION

The unit has been in Mandera to provide security support during the construction of the Kenya-Somalia security wall.

Armed with G3 assault rifles, about four officers marched to the report desk and demanded the keys to the men’s cells. “Others took strategic points within the station, but one of the four who came at the desk pointed his gun at our officers with keys to the cell,” said the source.

At this point, the officers realised the APs were on a mission.

After the keys had been handed to them, the four opened the cell and called out the colleague who smiled as he walked to freedom.

ROBBERY WITH VIOLENCE

Mr Richard Karanja was the man to be rescued by the RDU officers. Mr Karanja had been arrested and booked on Thursday in connection with a robbery in Mandera town last weekend.

Police have been investigating a robbery with violence at Takbir Petrol Station in which a guard was killed and at least Sh700,000 stolen.

A gang of seven walked into the petrol station dressed in police uniform, according to a statement by another watchman who survived the ordeal. The rescued officer was to be arraigned at a Mandera court on Friday.

Mandera Deputy County Commissioner Lawrence Omondi admitted there was an incident at the police station, but declined to divulge more information. “We are in process of gathering information to know exactly what transpired. At this moment I don’t have much to tell you,” he said.

SPECIAL UNIT

It was claimed the RDU officer had been positively identified and arrested during an identification parade County Police Commander Bernard Nyakwaka had ordered.

Mr Omondi, however, said he could not confirm this as he had left when the parade was still underway

An RDU officer who participated in the “rescue mission” told the Nation that they were victims of circumstances in the robbery investigation.

“Mr Karanja is always in charge of a machine gun mounted on our patrol vehicle and there was no way he would have left it to get into a petrol station to steal,” said the officer.

An investigating officer said the matter was beyond them, revealing that a special unit from Nairobi had been dispatched.

By Daily Nation

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