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Suspects in Wajir terror attack that left 11 dead freed on bond

BRUHAN MAKONGBy BRUHAN MAKONG
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Two suspects in the Wajir terror attack that left 11 passengers dead on December 6, 2019 have been released on a Sh3 million bond each with surety.

Musa Hussein Ramadhan and Sadiq Abdullahi Issack, the driver and conductor of the Medina bus that was attacked by suspected Al-Shabaab militants, were arrested after it emerged that they might have played a role in the attack.

The victims of the attack were eight Anti-Stock Theft Unit officers who were returning to their workstation in Elram, Mandera County, a teacher, a doctor and a civilian.

Six people survived the attack.

NOT FLIGHT RISK

On Wednesday, Wajir Senior Resident Magistrate Amos Makoros dismissed an application to deny the suspects bond saying the prosecution had failed to give compelling reasons to curtail the right.

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While delivering the ruling, Mr Makoros dismissed assertions by the investigating officer that the accused persons are a flight risk, saying that two are well known and permanent residents with no known criminal records.

He further dismissed allegations that the two are connected to Al-Shabaab and likely to escape to Somalia if released on bond, stating that this was not supported in any way by tangible evidence and that it was speculative.

CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT

“As rightly pointed out by the defence counsel, bond is now a matter of right guaranteed by our Constitution and the only time the same can be curtailed is when compelling reasons are raised,” he said.

Mr Makoros also dismissed claims that the accused are likely to interfere with witnesses after the applicant failed to provide tangible evidence.

“I reiterate that compelling reasons must be furnished to the court if an accused is to be denied bond and in this instance this has not been done,” he added.

The accused were given 14 days to appeal.

The case comes up for hearing on February 3 and 4.