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Police reveal how they nabbed Pangani explosive-rigged car

By CYRUS OMBATI | Apr 24th 2014 | 3 min read
Police examine the vehicle that exploded on Wednesday night in Pangani killing four people including two police officers. [PHOTO: JONAH ONYANGO]


Nairobi, Kenya: Police have revealed how they spotted and stopped the terrorists’ car that went off with explosives killing two police officers and two suspects at the Pangani police station, Nairobi.

Inspector General of police David Kimaiyo said the slain officers were part of a team that was manning a roadblock near the police station for normal security checks when they spotted the Toyota NZE drive on the wrong lane.

“The occupants were flagged down and questioned about why they were driving on the wrong side they couldn't  explain,” said Kimaiyo.

He said the officers were forced to board the car after the two occupants tried to defy their orders and drive off in the 8 pm incident.

The officers decided to take them to Pangani Police Station for further interrogation.

Two officers entered the car to make sure the suspects didn't escape, one sat at the front and the other at the back, while the remaining officers in the 999 patrol car escorted the suspected car from behind, added Kimaiyo.

Kimaiyo said they suspect that on reaching the Pangani Police Station gate, one of the suspects sensed trouble and ignited the improvised explosive device that had been mounted in the car boot.

Kimaiyo said that the suspect who apparently detonated the bomb was seated in the left side of the car and that could be why he refused to move when asked to and instead asked the officer to occupy the next seat.

“Unfortunately the car exploded killing all occupants including our two officers. I want to assure Kenyans that the war against terrorism is still on and we are not relenting. We cannot be cowed by such heinous acts and therefore I fully declare war against any acts of crime in the country.”

He said the blast was caused by an Improvised Explosive Device that had been mounted in the car’s boot. He added they are working to know the identities of the two men.

“We recovered documents from the car which we believe will help us know their identities,” he said.

The police boss mourned the loss of the two gallant officers who died in the line of duty as they were defending and protecting the country.

“I appreciate their good. Were it not for them having intercepted the vehicle, the IED could have caused huge damage,” he said.

The blast was so powerful that it was heard several kilometres away.

Some residents of Parklands and Ngara said they heard the blast.

Witnesses said when the blast went off other officers who were at the station took cover for several minutes before coming to check the car.

The car was extensively damaged following the blast as police said they were yet to know where it was to be used.

Kimaiyo said they will intensify their operations on terrorists in the country. Interior cabinet secretary Joseph ole Lenku also visited the scene. There was panic at the scene when another explosion went off as the dignitaries briefed the media.

It later emerged the second blast was caused by a grenade that the officers there found in the car and detonated.


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