Kenyans remember ’98 US embassy blast

August 7, 2011 2:59 pm

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 7 – Survivors and relatives of people killed in the 1998 US embassy bombing in Nairobi held the 13th anniversary at the memorial park on Sunday and accused the Kenya and US governments of neglecting them.

The nearly 100 victims said they were yet to be paid any compensation fees, 13 years after the bomb attack that left many of them maimed, to an extent that some of them cannot get employed anywhere.

“Let it be known that we have never been paid any money by either the Kenya or US governments. We have been forgotten and neglected because no one thinks about us despite the promises we were given,” chairman of the August 7th Memmorial Park Ali Mwadama who led Sunday’s gathering said.

“As we gather here today (Sunday), some of the survivors are dying because they could not continue obtaining the needed medication to keep them going, how long will this continue,” he posed and urged the two governments to consider meeting their pledge of paying their restitution.

Mr Mwadama was among hundreds of Kenyans who gathered at the Memmorial Park on Sunday to lay wreaths at the plaque where names of some 219 people killed in the bombing are inscribed.

At least 219 people were killed and more than 4,000 others wounded when suicide bombers in a truck laden with explosives parked outside the embassy and detonated a powerful bomb that brought down the US embassy building on Haille Sellasie Avenue in 1998.

A simultaneous explosion occurred at the US embassy in Dar es Salaam in Tanzania where 11 people were killed and 85 others wounded.

Victims of the Nairobi attack have not been adequately compensated 13 years after the devastating tragedy which was blamed on Osama bin Laden’s vicious Al Qaeda network.

The survivors questioned why the US and Kenyan governments chose only to re-construct buildings affected by the bombing while ignoring the fact that people lost their relatives and others were injured and requires urgent compensation.

“You can see all around here, all the buildings which were affected have been put up, but the people who lost their relatives or those who were injured as a result of the attack have not been compensated,” one survivor Mr Layfields Mureithi said.

Mr Mureithi said he was wounded while trying to assist the injured victims at the scene of the blast but has never received a penny from any of the governments concerned.


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