Seven wardens of Kamiti Maximum Prison have been arrested after three convicted terrorists escaped custody.
Interior CS Fred Matiang’i said preliminary investigations suggested the escape from arguably the most secured maximum prison in the country was abetted by laxity and incompetence.
The terrorists vanished from Kamiti prison yesterday morning in what Commissioner General of Police Wycliffe Ogallo could only describe as an “unfortunate incident.”
He said the government will protect whistle-blowers who will volunteer information that could lead to the arrests of the prisoners who are described as dangerous.
Abikar was charged and convicted in 2019 over his links to al Shabaab and for abetting the Garissa University attack of April 2015 that left 148 people dead.
Odhiambo was arrested in 2019 for trying to join the Somali terror group.
Akhulunga was arrested in 2012 over a foiled attack on Kenya’s Parliament and charged with possessing explosives, ammunition and firearms.
Matiang’i led a senior security team to Kamiti prison last evening. He further announced a massive manhunt involving specialised teams had been launched across the country for Musharraf Abdalla Akhulunga a.k.a Zarkarawi, Mohammed Ali Abikar and Joseph Juma Odhiambo a.k.a Yusuf.
The DCI has placed a Sh60 million bounty on their recapture.
The CS said more arrests and prosecutions will follow after the Directorate of Criminal Investigations moved in to probe the prison break.
The incident came in the wake of another shocking incident a month ago where a serial killer- Masten Wanjala- walked out of a police station where he was being held.
It also came two days after Lang’ata police arrested a terror suspect who was seeking information from a cop.
Matiang’i said, “We will not only go the direction investigations will point us but we will act resolutely to ensure this kind of recklessness does not happen again … there is a certain level of irresponsibility we have to deal with ….”
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The CS was with principal secretaries Karaja Kibicho (Interior) and Zeynab Mohammed (Correctional Services), the Inspector General of Police Hilary Mutyambai, DCI boss George Kinoti and Ogallo.
The CS said the extensive tour of Kamiti, including Block A 6, where the trio had been held, did not appear to support the official version of escape given by the prisons’ managers.