Fishermen on a fishing expedition near Lake Victoria’s Ngodhe Islands in Mbita, Homabay County, experienced panic on March 16th when they discovered six mortar bombs.
According to Edward Ochieng, the spokesperson for the fishermen, three of them had set out on a fishing vessel powered by a mortar the previous night, armed with a lantern. The fishermen cast their nets into the lake’s still waters, hoping for a bountiful catch of the local silver cyprinid known as Omena, following the tradition passed down from their forefathers.
As they approached Ngodhe, their net suddenly became heavier than usual, and they were thrilled at the prospect of a big catch. However, their excitement quickly turned to shock when they discovered that they had caught six metal objects that looked like bombs.
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They immediately took cover and contacted the police, realizing they had collected explosives. The 80mm bombs were handed over to Bomb Disposal and Hazardous Materials detectives based in Kisumu city after being kept in safe custody at the Mbita Subcounty Police Headquarters.
The fishermen expressed concern over the frequent discovery of explosives in the area, citing similar findings in 2021. In 2019, explosives from the colonial era were discovered concealed in an old rusty wooden box in the lake. Such discoveries are not uncommon in the waters, according to officials. As a result, the police have launched a campaign to educate residents on identifying explosives and their dangers.
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