Police: Al-Shabaab attacks in Lamu on the wane - Daily Nation

Al-Shabaab attacks on Lamu-Garsen road drop, police say

Monday June 18 2018

Police, Lamu

Police on patrol in Lamu. Many families in Coast region are blaming the security agencies, especially the Kenya Defence Forces and the police, for the disappearances of their relatives. PHOTO | KAZUNGU KALUME | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By KALUME KAZUNGU
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Al-Shabaab terror attacks on security personnel and passenger vehicles are on the wane on the Lamu-Garsen road, Lamu County police say.

Lamu County Police Commander Muchangi Kioi says the establishment of security camps in all hotspots prone to Al-Shabaab attacks on the road has been the main contributor to the drop in attacks.

In March this year, the government announced establishment police and Kenya Defence Forces camps at Milihoi, Nyongoro, Lango la Simba and Mambo Sasa terror hotspots where militants have ambushed and launched attacks on security vehicles and public service buses.

OPERATION LINDA BONI

Speaking to the Nation in his office on Monday, Mr Kioi also said the ongoing Operation Linda Boni had contributed to the reduction of terror attack cases in the region.

Operation Linda Boni was launched by the national government in September 2015 to flush out Al-Shabaab militants believed to be hiding in the dense Boni forest.

Mr Kioi also said efforts by the security agencies to combat Al-Shabaab in Boni forest has resulted in the calmness being experienced in the county.

“We haven’t witnessed any terror attacks on our roads recently. This is because we have increased general patrols in all areas across the county. We even established camps in some areas considered to be terror hotspot along the Lamu-Garsen road. I can generally say that there is more peace and stability in Lamu now. Cases of attacks have really come down,” said Mr Kioi.

LOCALS' SUPPORT

He lauded local residents for their continued cooperation with the police and security forces, saying it has been crucial in the ongoing war on terror.

The county police commander called for continued vigilance from the locals, urging them to report to authorities any suspicious people and activities.

“We want to thank members of the public. They have been very helpful with information that has greatly boosted our work and we are appealing for more of that. As for us, we shall continue to do our work and ensure Lamu remains safe for locals and visitors,” said Mr Kioi.

He also assured investors that the county is safe for investment.

“With the increased security patrols and the ongoing operation in Boni Forest, we have been able to neutraliSe any terror threats that were present and contain any situation that would have threatened the security of this region. I can confidently say that Lamu is now very safe for investors and trade.  I call on all interested investors to come here. The government is still committed to the security of this county,” said Mr Kioi.

It was only in January this year that security agents were grappling with resurgence of Al-Shabaab attacks in the county.

The militants had killed a woman and injured five police officers in an ambush at Nyongoro on the Lamu-Garsen road. A day after, they ambushed Ishakani village.

Between May and November 2017, more than 30 police officers were killed in different attacks by the terror group.