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Police arrest persons taking photos of Westgate Mall, and GTC building

By Nyaboga Kiage September 26th, 2023 2 min read

Police are holding ten people who were caught taking photos at the Global Trade Centre (GTC) storied buildings and Westgate Mall in Nairobi.

Six of the suspects were arrested at the GTC Mall while others were within a restaurant in the same area.

They are currently at the Parklands Police Station for questioning on why they were taking the photos.

In the Westgate Mall incident suspected individuals including foreigners were nabbed for taking photos.

Police have in the past nabbed people who take photos in malls despite it not being a crime but officers have insisted that they were taking suspicious photos.

Nairobi County police boss Mr Adamson Bungei said police officers have been asked to be extra vigilant with the aim of taming any incidents.

“It is just a normal operation and police officers have just been asked to be extra vigilant to deal with any incident,” Mr Bungei said.

In the Westgate case, armed Al Shabaab militants stormed the mall and shot dead 40 people in 2013.

In August, a memo made rounds asking police bosses to be vigilant warning that armed militants were planning an attack.

The letter which was dismissed by the National Police Service as fake said that Al Shabaab militants were planning to carry attacks before the end of August.

It further gave details that some of the militants attached to the Al Shabaab were already within the city and could target areas frequented by foreigners.

The letter purported to have been signed by Mr Peter Nthigah who is the Nairobi County Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) called for vigilance from members of the public and the police.

However, it is worth noting that it is not illegal to take photos within malls but police officers and security guards were being vigilant.

The GTC is a Chinese owned set of buildings in Westlands. They include a shopping mall, residential houses, and hotel.