Malindi, Kenya: Bishop Lagho on Recent Attacks in Lamu

MALINDI, JULY 11, 2023 (CISA)– Rt. Rev. Willybard Lagho, bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Malindi has expressed concern over linking of the al-Shabaab to the Lamu attacks, saying it risks propagating their ideologies.

“Even if it’s not them, they are ready to claim responsibility. That’s just propaganda. The biggest enemy to our people in Lamu is within the community,” said the bishop tying some of the attacks to issues around land, wealth and inheritance.

 The bishop was commenting on the recent attacks in Lamu County where armed assailants raided Salama and Juhudi villages in Mkunumbi. Five men including a Form three student were killed in the June 24 attack.  On January 1, 2022, six people were killed following a suspected terrorist attack in the Windhu Majembeni area in Lamu. 

“Our brothers in Lamu time and again are attacked, and killed. And we keep asking, which evil is this that selectively kills men alone?  …why is it that every time an occurrence happens we are told it is Al-Shabaab? Why? Al-Shabaab doesn’t steal cows and goats. When they steal, the trail of footprints will definitely leave the police to their hiding pockets. And already that tells you that it is not al-Shabaab,” said the bishop.

The bishop was speaking during his homily on July 6, at a thanksgiving Mass for newly ordained deacons of the Fraternity of Holy Cross and All Saints in Kilulu, Malindi.

The bishop also cautioned against recent happenings that have seen some elderly in the community driven away from their homes and lands accused of being witches, mostly by their families.

“Some have been killed just because of their grey hair and others accused of being witches and attacked in the process. A child kills a parent because of land, I doubt someone in his right senses can be convinced to kill a parent. I think drugs are also involved,” he remarked.

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