Somalis in Mombasa have condemned the foiled assail on the Central Police Station by three women terrorists.
The community’s youth forum expressed disappointment with the young women whom they said “had tainted their image and that of Islam”.
Speaking during an anti-radicalisation forum that brought together about 200 Somali youth at Pride Inn Hotel on Sunday evening, forum chairman Abdi Mohammed asked the government not to go for mass victimisation against the community.
“A criminal is a criminal regardless of his religion, tribe or complexion. We are pleading with the government not to single-out the Somali community for victimisation,” said Mr Mohammed, a lecturer at Kenyatta University, Mombasa campus. “What the young women did must be condemned.”
As leaders of the Somali community, he said, they will not allow terrorists to misuse Muslim women veils (bui-buis) to disguise themselves when carrying out their attacks.
Mombasa deputy county commissioner Mahmoud Salim, who was the chief guest, assured that there would be no victimisation.
Mr Salim dispelled rumours that Muslim women will not be allowed to cover their faces when visiting public places.
“There’s nothing wrong with wearing your veils and ninja. Identification for security purposes is a must. The enemy of Islam are the ignorant Muslims who are intolerant,” said Mr Salim.
He urged parents to keep their children under watch in order to know their moves.
At the same time, Mandera business community living in Mombasa has called on security agencies to come up with better ways of curbing the runaway insecurity along the Kenya-Somalia border.
The traders, led by Mr Ibrahim Dalahow, said besides the Al-Shabaab menace, the law enforcement agencies should work with Somalia authorities and investigate the involvement of Marehan clan militia.
The traders asked intelligence and police officers to dig deeper and unmask the activities of Marehan militiamen who carry out attacks in similar to Al-Shabaab under the guise of religion.
“These militiamen have managed to operate in paradox because all eyes of our security officers are on Al-Shabaab. They were responsible for last year’s execution of quarry workers among others,” said Mr Dalahow.
The traders faulted local MPs for not listing security as a priority saying Kenya police reservists deserved to be given monthly stipends for their work.