NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 26 – Three people were shot, two of them seriously when fleeing gangsters opened fire in the Nairobi Central Business District on Monday afternoon.
Police said the gunmen were being trailed by plainclothes police officers when they started shooting at them on City Hall Way.
“We just heard gunshots and saw people running that way, later we realised that two people had been shot near Mama Ngina Street and they were rushed to hospital,” John Wafula, a guard in one of the city buildings who witnessed the shooting said.
“As efforts were being made to get those wounded transported to hospital, we heard other gunshots on Wabera Street where another person was shot and wounded,” he added.
Nairobi Central Divisional Police chief Richard Muguai said the gangsters were being pursued by plainclothes police officers when they opened fire.
“It appears they realised they were being trailed when they opened fire to scare away people to be able to escape, but they were targeting our officers,” Mr Muguai said.
“During the confusion, they shot and wounded three people but they are all in a stable condition.”
Mr Muguai told Capital News officers who were pursuing the suspects lost trail of them because of the confusion they caused when they shot in the air.
“There was a lot confusion because as much as our officers were pursuing them, they avoided opening fire directly at them even after that shooting because there were a lot of people who could have been injured as a result,” Mr Muguai explained and added: “The hunt for the criminals is still on.”
On Friday night, five suspected gangsters were shot dead a few meters from where the Monday shooting occurred.
A sixth suspect was shot dead on River Road after he shot and seriously wounded a senior police officer.
Police said the five thugs shot on Kenyatta Avenue had committed a series of armed robberies within Kilimani and Hurlingham area before they were accosted in town.
Three rifles and eight mobile phones suspected to have been stolen from their victims were recovered from them.
Interviews with senior police officers on Monday revealed that the gunmen killed on Friday night were wanted for a series of crimes, mainly committed in parts of Lang’ata and Kilimani areas in the past two weeks.
One officer said three of the slain men had left police custody two days before the shooting under unclear circumstances.
As a result of the increased robbery incidents and shootings in town, the chairman of the Nairobi District Security and Intelligence Committee (DSIC) Mr Ben Gachichio said they had intensified patrols on all the streets in the city.
“The situation is worrying because even now three people have been shot and wounded by gunmen in town, it is a big challenge to us but we are going to overcome them, we have intensified patrols,” he said.