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How Police boss bungled Strathmore University security drill

New details about the bungled Strathmore University security drill are pointing to lack of planning and negligence by the police and the institution’s administration.

The Langata police chief and his deputy, the head of the Administration Police’s Security of Government Unit and the university security director were directly involved.

Investigations have revealed details of what transpired between November 11 and the ill-fated day when Esther Kidemba, aged 33 died and several others injured.

On November 11, the director of safety at the university Paul Waime wrote to Nairobi County police commander Japheth Koome.

The letter was however taken to the Langata police chief Elija Mwangi on the same day. The letter indicated the university intended to carry out an evacuation drill in a “terrorist attack situation” on November 30.

The university asked for assistance from officers from Langata Division at the Madaraka Campus along Ole Sangale Road.

The drills included evacuation from buildings and was to last for one hour.

The police chief assigned his deputy to deal with the matter but claimed he informed the university security director that the drill could not be performed on the planned date as the operation order from the County Commander had not been released.

Nation established the letter was not delivered to the County commander. Yesterday, Mr Koome said he was not informed about the drill

This came as the university management admitted liability.

“There were mistakes in the whole process of preparations for undertaking of the exercise. We take the full blame and apologise to all those affected,” said Vice Chancellor Prof John Odhiambo.