In Mandera County, Kenya, an improvised explosive device (IED) attack claimed the lives of two Kenyan police officers. In a tragic incident on 3 September, seven other officers sustained injuries when their patrol vehicle struck an IED in the Arabia area. The Quick Response Unit (QRU) officers of the Kenya Police were conducting a mounted patrol from Arabia to Mandera when the explosion occurred.
Ledhi-Arabia area, Mandera County, KENYA. By Yahya:
The deadly incident unfolded in the Ledhi area as the police vehicle raced along the road. One officer succumbed to his injuries on the spot, while the second officer passed away later in the hospital. Authorities evacuated the injured personnel to a local medical facility to receive necessary medical attention. Two officers remain in critical condition.
“Rescue teams are facilitating for both bodies to be airlifted to Nairobi alongside three officers who have suffered critical head injuries,” the police report seen by the Somali Digest reads. The officers were among a contingent of security personnel patrolling the area early Sunday morning following intelligence reports of al-Shabaab insurgents’ presence in the area.
Decrease in al-Shabaab activity
Al-Shabaab, responsible for many attacks in Kenya, is suspected of planting the IED. The extremist group has escalated its activities near the Kenya-Somalia border in recent months. However, there was a noticeable decrease in such incidents during August, hinting at improved intelligence utilisation by security forces.
The attacks have compelled the Kenyan government to halt plans to reopen the Kenya-Somalia border, highlighting the persistent security concerns in the region.
Teachers refuse to return
Last Tuesday, at least 300 Kenyan teachers protested against returning to Mandera, Garissa, and Wajir counties in North Eastern Kenya. They converged at Nairobi’s Teachers Service Commission (TSC) headquarters. The teachers expressed dissatisfaction with working conditions, citing constant fear of death.
Nathaniel Kiplagat, a representative of the affected teachers, conveyed their concerns. “We have undergone a lot of intimidation. Some of us are so traumatised as we speak. We are not able to deliver our mandate as teachers under such conditions. We can’t go back to Mandera,” he said.
Northern and Northeastern Kenya has been grappling with security concerns, including cattle rustling and terrorist attacks, which have raised safety and well-being concerns for teachers in the region. The TSC has acknowledged the concerns and pledged to work towards addressing them. However, the teachers remain resolute in their call for transfers to safer regions.