Kenyan police raided an Islamic school on Tuesday, arresting two teachers and taking around 100 children into protective custody in what police described as a counter-terrorism operation involving foreign law-enforcement agencies.
Police described the school in Likoni, south of the port city of Mombasa, as a center for indoctrinating young men and children with militant ideology.
“The place has been monitored for a long time,” said a police source who asked not to be named. The police spokesman was unavailable for comment.
The six-year-old institution teaches Quran memorisation to Muslims at its elementary levels. Learners are later introduced to other Islamic subjects like jurisprudence or fiqh or hadith and Seera – the biography of Prophet Mohamed.
Kenya is mostly Christian but has a large Islamic population. It is relatively free from religious tension, although it has suffered repeated deadly attacks from Somali Islamist extremists.
A local Muslim leader confirmed the operation but said there was no evidence of any illegal activity.
“A group of local and foreign police officers raided the madrasa (Islamic school) where the pupils were sleeping and took them with their teachers,” Sheikh Hassan Omar, a senior official in the Council of Imams and Preachers of Kenya (CIPK), an umbrella body for Kenya’s religious leaders, told journalists in Mombasa.
“There are nearly 100 pupils and four madrasa teachers who have been arrested and detained at police headquarters and nobody is telling us what crime they have committed.”
It was not immediately clear why the police and CIPK gave different totals for the number of teachers arrested.
Omar said the officers asked for identification documents, including birth certificates from the children, and their teachers before they took them.
Another police source told Reuters the operation was sparked by intelligence information that both foreign and local children were being indoctrinated in the school.
“We have been assisted by some friends from outside with information and monitoring of this madrasa. That is normal with such cross-border criminal issues,” said another senior police officer, who also asked not to be named.
He did say which foreign country was involved in the raid but local media report that the children are from different countries including US, UK, Canada, South Africa, Saudia Arabia, Somalia, Zambia, Uganda and Kenya.
“They (the children) will be released one by one after we interrogate and clear them,” he said.
Grace Ndiragu, an officer in charge of anti Human Trafficking and Child Protection Unit shed more light on the raid saying it was done following cases of mistreatment of kids.
“We received two cases of child abuse from the parents and decided to conduct an operation.They will be interrogated and profiled before they can be released back to the family.” she at the site.
But some parents whose children have been arrested have said the raid was unlawful and victimizing.
Nigeria: Woman arrested over Outrageous Viral video of her abusing a child
Police in Nigeria’s commercial hub of Lagos have arrested a woman filmed abusing a child and then locking him in a caged kennel with dogs.
It is not clear when the footage was shot, but it went viral on Twitter earlier this month.
In the video clip, a woman is seen beating a boy, stripped to his waist, with a belt. She then drags him into an empty kennel and locks it before walking away. Two dogs can be seen in other neighbouring kennels.
The video caused outrage on social media, where shocked users offered rewards to anyone that could track down the woman.
On Thursday, a police spokesperson, Dolapo Badmos, tweeted that the woman in the video had been arrested.
“The suspect is in custody and will be charged to court… The boy, who happens to be an orphan, has been rescued and kept in a shelter provided by Lagos state government,” she said.
Her tweet links to a video filmed by police showing the dog kennels where the boy was locked up:
Nigeria: Imo recovery team storms Okorocha’s premises, recover alleged looted state property
Okorocha Faults Action
Imo State Recovery of Moveable Assets Committee, yesterday, stormed a premises belonging to the immediate past governor of the state, Rochas Okorocha, where it discovered properties suspected to be that of the State Government, but allegedly parked in the premises known as All In Warehouse, located on Aba Road, Owerri.
But the Commissioner of Police, Rabiu Ladodo, who arrived the scene laced with crowd, directed that the property should be put in custody of the police. Some of the items included furniture, clothing materials and others.
The chairman of the committee, Ndubuaku, said the committee received credible intelligence information that led to them to storm the premises. He pronounced sealing of the place, directing that nobody, including the Okorochas, should enter the premises till further notice. Ndubuaku said the committee would ensure that all the State Government property illegally stolen were recovered.
But Okorocha, in a statement signed by his Special Adviser (Media), Sam Onwueneodo, described the action of the State Government as unjustifiable.
“This is to inform all men and women of goodwill, that barely two days after the agents of the Economic & Financial Crime Commission, EFCC, had marked the ALL – IN SHOP owned by the wife of the former governor, Dr. Mrs. Nneoma Nkechi Okorocha, located at Naze near Owerri, for investigation also following flood of petitions written to the Commission by PDP government in the State, the leader and members of the government’s Committee on the Recovery of Government Property invaded the shop today (yesterday) July 26, 2019, and looted the goods there, including the ones inside the containers inside the premises.
“We had told all those, who cared to hear us, that the PDP government in the State is out for witch-hunting just to intimidate Opponents, otherwise why invading and looting a Shop with furniture and baby goods, already marked for investigation by the EFCC.
“And the Containers they looted have been in the premises of the shop before the EFCC agents came and marked the Shop for investigation last Tuesday; they are still there before the Jasper Ndubuaku-led gang invaded the place. The question now is, what if at the end of the day, the EFCC’s investigation establishes that this shop has no relationship with the last administration?
“Obviously, Jasper Ndubuka and his gang are not recovering any property but are on looting spree. They were the ones, who petitioned to EFCC and they came and marked the investments they had mentioned in their petitions for investigation. Then, why going to loot the same establishments marked by EFCC for investigation? If Governor Ihedioha had asked question and if he meant well, he would not have entrusted such sensitive task into the hands of a man like Jasper Ndubuaku.
“Nigerians should watch closely the brigandage going on in Imo. Leaders and members of the so-called Government’s Property Recovery Committee are just having the licence to loot with the protection of the State Government. Otherwise, why won’t they allow the EFCC to conclude their investigation?”
“We have been shouting for the world to hear our voice. Aside their inviting the EFCC, we have asked them to publish whatever they have against Rochas Okorocha and the family or anybody that served in the Rescue Mission government, but they have not been forthcoming. The implication of all these is that, where restraint is not applied and the governor cannot control the recklessness, self-help may be the last resort; nobody should be blamed.”