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Cabinet member locks herself in office to escape arrest

Acting fast

File image of police officers during a past patrol in Mombasa County

Mombasa Finance cabinet member Maryam Abdillahi Mbaruk was locked up in her office for hours after she discovered that police intended to arrest her.

The Finance CEC was assisted by county government inspectorate officers who barred eight police officers from gaining access into the offices.

Police had been sent to retrieve the cabinet member and her Chief Officer Aisha Abdi after High Court judge Erick Ogola sentenced them to jail over a Sh18 million debt owed to a lawyer.

The county government had committed to settle the debt owed to Robinson Malombe within 60 days in January prompting the judge to suspend arrest warrants that had been put in force.

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However, after Ms Abdillahi failed to honour the agreement, the judge lifted the suspended arrest warrants.

Police request backup

The eight officers who were prevented from making an arrest requested backup which arrived 40 minutes later.

Led by the Coast Region Deputy Police Commandant Joseph Chebii, the team of officers was surprised to find the locked offices empty, the two managed to sneak out of the building undetected.

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The police have been criticized for failing to execute the arrest orders in what seems as partial enforcement of the law.

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