Three people who have gone missing after a vehicle they were travelling in was attacked by suspected Alshabaab militants on Monday are alive and being held by the terror group police have confirmed.
The three were identified as Mr Galogalo, Mr Oshe and Mr Jamal and included the driver of the vehicle.
According to George Seda, Mandera County Police Commander, more security have been deployed to rescue the three. Mr Seda added that the security team tasked with the rescue mission have been provided with more advanced technology.
The victims were together with two police officers in a private vehicle transporting examination materials from Nairobi to Mandera. The two officers escaped unscathed and were later located some kilometres into bushes surrounding the scene spot.
“We managed to get the two officers who were escorting the team from Nairobi. The officers are safe but we are still searching for the three people who took off including the driver of the vehicle,” said Mr Seda.
“According to information we have, we believe they are still alive and our concerted rescue efforts will yield fruit soon,” Mr Seda said.
The county police boss added the members of the insurgent group terrorising the residents of Banisa and other border areas are locals who joined the terror cell and have been sent back with a mission.
“We believe the militants in areas far from our border with Somalia are locals who were recruited, radicalised and have come back to cause mayhem,” he said.
He cited lack of co-operation from the local community as the main challenge in dealing with the insecurity situation in Mandera.
“We need collaborative efforts to fight the common enemy but our security teams are getting scanty information from the locals,” he said.
He said there is a possibility that there are several groups causing mayhem in Banisa after a telecommunications mast was vandalised on Tuesday night as police searched for the missing three.
“We suspect the militants have divided themselves into two groups because our teams kept trailing one group while another vandalised the communications mast,” he said.
The county police boss said the missing three were still being held in Mandera County and that they will be rescued.