Kenya

Shock as explosives found inside Isiolo church compound

Shock as explosives found inside Isiolo church compound

Explosives which were found dumped at the Jesus Foundation Glorious Centre Church compound in Isiolo on November 21, 2021.

Photo credit: Waweru Wairimu | Nation Media Group

Worshippers at Jesus Foundation Glorious Centre Church in Isiolo were Sunday gripped with fear after explosives were found in the compound.

What they initially thought were scrap metals would later turn out to be explosives after Bulakati Area Manager Elgoi Wario took them to Central Police Station where one was established to be live.

“The church pastor informed me of the suspicious devices which I collected and took to the police station only to be shocked to learn that one was a live explosive,” Mr Wario said.

Spent cartridges were recovered six days ago at the church’s compound within Mti wa Makaa area.

Mr Timothy Koome, a cleric at the church, said the discovery of the devices disrupted their ongoing five-day conference.

“We are appealing to police to probe the issue because we wonder why they are being dumped near our church. We call for a thorough search of the area to ensure there are no other explosives,” Mr Koome said.

The incident has spread fear and panic among local residents who said the devices could have been dropped by criminals to scare them away from the area.

“Why are the explosives and spent cartridges are not dumped elsewhere but at Mti wa Makaa?” Ms Sophia Kananu posed.

Isiolo County Police Commander Joseph Kigen assured the public that his officers were in control and there was no cause of alarm.

“They are old devices and only one of them is live, our people have nothing to worry about,” Mr Kigen said.

It still remains unclear whether the devices were dropped at the church by scrap metal collectors or criminals targeting worshippers and local residents.

Mr Wario asked residents to report to authorities whenever they come across suspicious devices for swift action.

Authorities believe the devices were collected from a nearby military camp as scrap metals and dropped at the church but the repeated happenings have raised suspicion.

The incident comes two months after two boys aged seven and eight died after a hand grenade they were playing with exploded at a village in Matarba.