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Strathmore University staff dead, 20 injured in security drill

A staff member died and at least 20 students were injured on Monday following a security drill at Strathmore University in Nairobi that was conducted to gauge the institution’s level of preparedness in responding to a terror attack.

The employee died in hospital last evening where she and others who were injured in the drill were taken.


“We confirm that we have one fatality, this evening.  One staff member by name Esther Kidemba, 33, has died from severe head injuries. Efforts to resuscitate her failed, and she succumbed to the injuries. The family has been informed of this,” the university’s director of communication Betty Ngala said in a statement sent to newsrooms.

Most of the injured were rushed to Nairobi West Hospital and some to Nairobi Hospital. Two of them were placed in the Intensive Care Unit at Nairobi West Hospital.

“Most of those we received had fractures while some sustained head and chest injuries,” said Dr Evans Mwenda at Nairobi West Hospital.



Some of the students jumped from upper floors of some of the university’s tall buildings, leading to the limb injuries.

Shocked students narrated how the mock attack happened , their escape from class and nearby hostels and the frightening sight of the “attackers”.

The drill was conducted near the Student Centre where most students gather before and after classes.

Students said those involved in the exercise ‘‘carried real guns’’ and wore attire similar to those used by Al-Shabaab attackers.



“I saw someone coming up the stairs with a gun and wearing Al-Shabaab outfit. I ran and hid under a table before getting out through a window. People were screaming all over. I am really scared,” said Martin Chege, a student who was at the Student Centre.

The learners faulted the university for failing to inform them prior to the drill, saying they would have been better prepared and injuries would have been avoided.

Parents of the injured students also said it was wrong for the university to conduct the drill without proper preparations.