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Mombasa church evacuated over bomb scare

Easter celebrations Anglican Church cathedral in Mombasa were halted on Sunday after a security guards grew suspicious of a vehicle parked by unknown people at the church’s entrance.

The vehicle had deflated tyres and is said to have been abandoned by two men of Somali origin who ran away when confronted by security guards.

Armed regular police and anti-terrorism officers cordoned off the area.

A woman was also arrested at the cathedral on suspicion of being part of the group that abandoned the car.

A sniffer dog was brought to detect potential explosive materials in the car which was later towed to the provincial police headquarters.

Bishop Julius Kalu of the cathedral said the incident scared the congregation that had turned up for Easter celebrations.

Bishop Kalu explained that he was informed of the bomb scare just as he was preparing to deliver his sermon.

“We normally have five services on Sunday. The first and second service went on very well, uninterrupted. But during the 11 am service, at the time of giving the notices at exactly 12.15, I was told some people had been seen forcing their way in through the wrong gate.

“The police sent a word that we should evacuate the church immediately so we had to cut short the service, I had to stop delivering my sermon and inform the people to go out,” he said.

He said the congregation did not panic and left in an orderly manner while police combed the church.

“Police assured us that there was nothing but the way the car has been packed, right at the entrance of the church and its tires flat, we failed to understand the motive behind this.