By: ANGIRA ZADOCK
Armed men raided the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party’s Nairobi headquarters on Sunday night and stole computers said to contain vital information.
The gangsters stole 12 computers — 10 of desktop and two laptops — in an attack police suspect could have been organised by one of the guards who escaped from the scene.
Kilimani OCPD Peter Kattam on Monday said the gang cut the window grill after trying to break the main door in vain.
While inside, they broke the door’s lock and opened the main door.
They ransacked offices on the ground and first floor, leaving items scattered all over.
One of the guards, Mr Patrick Opola Ausi, said the attackers stormed in around 11pm and left a few minutes past 3am.
They tied him up, together with colleague Eric Omollo, in a structure behind the main building.
The two guards said they did not know how the gate was opened.
They said they were only ambushed by the men who were already inside the compound.
“We heard the dog barking and decided to check and that is when we were confronted by the armed men,” said Mr Ausi.
The missing guard, who was also the dog handler, had not been traced by Monday afternoon.
He had been deployed to the party headquarters just two days before the attack and his colleagues did not know much about him.
“We don’t know if the missing guard was part of the gang or has been abducted. We urge police to urgently follow up the matter,” said ODM spokesman Philip Etale.
The gunmen appeared not to be in a hurry as they moved from office to office taking computers and breaking drawers and lockers.
“They had taken all our phones but after a few hours we could hear one of them saying it was already 3am and they had to leave,” said Mr Ausi.
Mr Kattam said he received a call around 4.40am and rushed to the scene.
A team of police officers and Cord leader Raila Odinga visited the scene.
Mr Kattam said scenes of crime personnel have also collected vital evidence.
“We are also studying the CCTV footage to see if it can reveal the identity of the burglars and the vehicle used to carry the computers,” said Mr Kattam.
The number of the attackers was not immediately established. The OCPD said there were only four but one of the guards said he saw over 10 people.
“We suspect this could be an inside job as the gang appears to have had easy access to the Orange House,” said Mr Kattam.
Mr Etale termed the theft a blow to the party as most of the stolen computers had crucial information on party activities.
ODM has been conducting grassroots elections ahead of their national one.
SOURCE: DAILY NATION