Lenku admits looting at Westgate, probe continues

September 29, 2013 4:27 pm
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Lenku said the government had however been able to apprehend three suspected looters/FILE
Lenku said the government had however been able to apprehend three suspected looters/FILE
NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 29 – Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph ole Lenku says three businesses have reported looting at the Westgate mall, since the September 21 terror attack.

Speaking at a press briefing on Sunday, Lenku said the government had however been able to apprehend three suspected looters.

“We wish to affirm that government takes very seriously allegations of looting and that those found to have engaged in looting will be prosecuted,” Lenku warned.

He confirmed that most of the business owners at the mall had inspected their premises and reported that everything was intact.

The Cabinet Secretary called on anyone with information on looting at the mall to report to the police.

On the other hand, he revealed that one more suspect was arrested on Sunday in connection with the attack, bringing to nine, the number of people in custody.

Lenku however declined to reveal the nationalities of those arrested.

“As soon as investigations are complete we will update you with identities of the suspects,” adding that it was premature to release the details as it might prejudice the ongoing investigations.

The police have so far recorded statements from 156 witnesses concerning the attack.

Forensic investigators have also identified one of the vehicles used by the Westgate mall terrorists and recovered items that are providing crucial leads.

He maintained that the death toll stands at 67 and that the government had not received formal reports of missing persons from various non-governmental organizations involved in helping the victims of the attack.

He says the deceased include 57 Kenyans, two French, a Chinese, Ghanaian, Canadian, Korean, Australian, South African, Peruvian and a Dutch national.

“We urge Kenyans who may have missing persons who could have been at the mall at the time of the attack to report to the police. We also urge the humanitarian agencies to whom some people may have reported missing person to forward that information to the police,” Lenku insisted.

Concerning the travel advisory issued by the United States government on Saturday, Lenku condemned the action adding that it this stage it was not helping in the collective efforts against global terrorism.

“The advisory is uncalled for, unnecessary and unfriendly.”

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