Outlawed sect beheads two more in Kenya

Nairobi, Kenya - Members of Kenya's outlawed Mungiki gang beheaded two more people on Saturday, local media said, a day after the president vowed to crack down on those behind a wave of violence in the volatile run-up to elections.

Police were not immediately available to comment on the attack, which KTN Television said took place after about 40 Mungiki members waylaid a minibus taxi in Murang'a district.

The driver and conductor were decapitated and passengers locked in a nearby church before being robbed by the gang then released, KTN reported from the scene in Karuri village.


On Friday, President Mwai Kibaki pledged to hunt down Mungiki members just hours after five earlier murders rocked central Kenya, including one in his own constituency. The gang was also blamed for the murders of six people found decapitated last month.

"Even if you hide, we will find you and kill you," Kibaki said in a speech to mark the 44th anniversary of self-rule.

While Kenyans largely applaud his government for economic advances and the introduction of free primary education, corruption and crime weigh heavily on his prospects of re-election in a poll expected to be held in December.

First emerging in the 1990s, Mungiki, which means "multitude" in the local Kikuyu tribal language, uses prayers and archaic rituals to bond recruits.

It was banned in 2002 after members wielding knives and clubs killed more than 20 people in a Nairobi slum.

Many Kenyans believe corrupt politicians and police officers have been in league with the gang, particularly in helping set up its lucrative extortion rackets.