Nairobi (Caasimada Online) – Kenyan authorities are scrambling to uncover how a Somali national detained for fraud came to possess the ID of Mohamed Kuno, the infamous mastermind behind the Garissa University terrorist attack that claimed 148 lives in April 2015.
Kuno, also known as Sheikh Mahamud, Dulyadeen, or Gamadhere, is not just remembered for this horrendous act but was also a known madrasa teacher and a pivotal figure within the Al-Shabab extremist organization operating in Kenya and Somalia.
Yesterday, in an unforeseen twist, Abdi Yusuf Ali, the suspect in question, faced Makadara Magistrate’s Court. But not for the expected fraud. Instead, an amended charge was read, highlighting registration under pretenses and forgery.
The prosecution alleges that between 14 July 1987 and 19 February 2008 in Nanighi, Garissa County, Ali, in collaboration with unnamed accomplices, dishonestly claimed to be Ralia Mohamed Wardere’s son to procure an identity card.
Moreover, during the same time frame, he’s said to have fabricated a Kenyan National Identity Card, attempting to pass it as an authentic document from the National Registration Bureau (NRB).
Gamadhere’s ID and its unexpected appearance
But how did Ali get tangled in such a web? Earlier this year, on 1 April, Ali was formally accused of swindling a businessman of a hefty Sh6.5 million under the Penal Code’s Section 313.
Moreover, he resisted fingerprinting at Pangani Police Station, violating the National Police Service (NPS) Act.
Despite these severe allegations, Ali emphatically pleaded not guilty. He was presented before Senior Principal Magistrate Agnes Mwangi at the Makadara Law Courts, receiving a bail set at Sh500,000.
Corporal Hussein Hassan from Pangani Police Station, entrusted with the investigation, voiced his skepticism in an affidavit regarding Ali’s true nationality, even with a Kenyan identity card.
Suspicion intensified as it appeared that Ali had procured the ID at 30. And as the investigation deepened, an alarming fact emerged.
The ID card Ali was using belonged to none other than terrorist Gamadhere, leading officials to contemplate charging Ali in relation to the terrorist attack.
Ali’s true connection
Now, the National Intelligence Service (NIS) finds itself daunting: to discern the nature of Ali’s association with the Gamadhere lineage.
How did this individual, arrested for fraud, come to have in his possession the ID of a top-ranking terrorist figure?
In the words of Cpl. Hassan, “The trajectory of the case took a sudden turn with the revelation of the ID.” While the courts decide Ali’s fate, the bigger question looms.
Is this merely a case of identity theft and fraud, or are more significant, ominous operations afoot?