Nairobi — Kenyan officials say al-Shabaab extremists from neighbouring Somalia have beheaded nine civilians in an attack on a village in the south-east.
James Ole Serian, who leads a task force of security agencies combating al-Shabaab, says the attack early yesterday morning occurred in Jima village in
Lamu County. Beheadings by al-Shabaab in Kenya have been rare.
The attack occurred in the same area where al-Shabaab engaged security agencies in a day-long battle three days ago. Al-Shabaab has vowed retribution on Kenya for sending troops in 2011 to Somalia to fight the extremist group, which last year became the deadliest Islamic extremist group in Africa.
The group in recent months has increased attacks with homemade bombs, killing at least 46 in Lamu and Mandera Counties.
Meanwhile, A Kenyan court on Friday nullified the contract for printing presidential ballot papers, a victory for the opposition which is concerned about the election due to be held next month. The high court judge ruled that Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission’s (IEBC) tendering process was insufficiently transparent.
The opposition has lodged a series of legal challenges over the organisation of the election where President Uhuru Kenyatta is seeking a second and final five-year term against veteran opposition leader Raila Odinga.
The electoral board resigned in October after the opposition accused it of bias. Kenya has a history of disputed elections. At least 1 200 people were killed in ethnic violence after the December 2007 polls. The opposition challenged the 2013 result, but it was upheld by the Supreme Court.
On the ballot paper case, the IEBC awarded the 2.5 billion-shilling ($24 million) contract to Dubai-based firm Al Ghurair last year. But a high court judge cancelled it in February, saying it did not follow new election regulations, after it was challenged by the opposition. — AP