18 September 2018

Kenya: Family Cries Foul After 31-Year-Old Man Acquitted of Terror Charges Abducted

Mombasa — A family of a 31-year-old man, Nassir Abdalla Skanda, who was acquitted of terror-related charges by the court last year are crying foul over his abduction.

The family said Tuesday that Skanda was abducted by people who identified themselves as police officers last Friday as he was going to the mosque for afternoon prayers in Nyali.

According Abdhalla's mother, Juweriya Nassir, he had spent the last nine months at home in Bondeni, Mombasa after he was acquitted last December of terror-related charges after a four-year trial.

"I wish to get my son. It's been five days since we last saw him, and it is really painful. I can't sleep, I can't eat. We are asking President Uhuru Kenyatta to intervene," she pleaded.

Skanda's mother-in-law, Shumi Mohammed Shelaly, said Skanda had found work at a house in Nyali where he was laying tiles.

"It was only his second week at work after spending the last nine months distraught at home following his four-year stay in police custody," said Shelaly.

The family which was speaking at the Muslim for Human Rights (MUHURI) offices in Mombasa, described Skanda as a good-fearing man, a father of a little daughter.

The family says they have been to all police stations, hospitals and morgues at the Coast but have not found their son. They now wish to find Skanda dead or alive.

Skanda is said to have been arrested in 2014 and charged with attempting to bomb the Reef Hotel in Mombasa, but he was acquitted in December, last year after the court ruled there was insufficient evidence to pin him down.

Muhuri Executive Director Hassan Abdille said the trend of forceful disappearance of people at the Coast is now worrying.

"The vehicle that was used to abduct Skanda was a saloon car with registration number KCE 141F. He was forcefully taken out of a tuk tuk as he was going to the mosque at around 12," he said.

Muhuri Rapid Response Officer Francis Auma said this is the eighth case of enforced disappearance within Mombasa and Lamu this year.

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