New details contradict Matiang'i's position that no Kenyan lives were lost in Lamu attack

US is mourning three citizens killed during the attack

New details contradict Interior CS Fred Matiang'i's position that no Kenyan lives were lost in Lamu  Manda Airfield attack

New details have emerged on the aftermath of a daring attack by Al Shabab terrorists at a military airstrip in Manda, Lamu County.

The government of Kenya, through KDF spokesman Lt Colonel Paul Njuguna and Interior CS Fred Matiang'i had indicated that no Kenyan lives were lost during the Sunday morning incident.

However, the Washington Post, on Tuesday reported a confirmation that at least one civilian was killed near the airstrip.

The acclaimed US media house quoted neighbors and the area county commissioner Irungu Macharia confirming that escaping Al shabab terrorists had shot dead Mwalimu Chengo Ponda about 400 metres from the airstrip.

A relative of the deceased, identified as Karani Kigombe, said the police were well aware of Ponda's death and even visited their home to collect the bullet shells used by the terrorists.

The information was in direct contradiction to Matiang'i's claim that not a single Kenyan life was killed.

Kenyans had started asking for information after a US Senator who chairs the country's Senate Foreign Relations Committee, made reference to loss of Kenyan lives shortly after the attack.

I am saddened to learn that American and Kenyan lives were lost during a heinous terrorist attack on a Kenya-US operating base early this morning,” Republican Senator from Idaho Sen. James E. Risch said.

The US Senate's Foreign Relations Committee is a powerful organ that receives regular briefings on any matter touching on US interests abroad.

Despite Matiang'i and Njuguna's denials to the press, Senator Risch has not retracted the tweet and there is no indication that Kenya has formally protested the tweet as would be the procedure when a senior government official from a friendly country publishes misleading information.

The Washington Post's story also quoted the neighbors indicating that over ten terrorists escaped to the neighboring villages despite the government's position that all the attackers were killed within an hour of the raid.

The US army command mourned 23-year old Henry "Mitch" Mayfield Jr who died during the attack at the Manday Bay Airfield. Two other US citizens, working as Defense contractors were also killed during the attack.


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