NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep – Scores of people came out in large numbers on Monday at Nairobi’s Uhuru Park to donate blood for those affected in the terror attack at the Westgate mall.
Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero led senior City Hall officials and other well-wishers for the blood drive organised by the county government and the Kenya Red Cross.
Kidero said that the spirit of the country has not been broken by the terror attacks and that Kenyans will remain united in this time of trouble.
“I wish to thank the huge number of Kenyans who have responded to our appeal for blood, a clear demonstration of the indomitable spirit of the Kenyan people. The heartless criminals who carried out the senseless attack did not and will never break this spirit,” he said.
He added that the Nairobi County Government decided to open the new blood collection centre at Uhuru Park to cope with the overwhelming turnout which had overstretched a donation centre set up at the Kencom bus terminus on Sunday.
Kidero also urged psychologists and other experts in counselling to come out and help those affected by the attack.
“I appeal to those who have counselling skills including psychologists, counsellors, pastors and kadhis to lend their skills and expertise to those who were injured in the attack and their families,” said the governor.
The Governor later visited the City Mortuary to assess and get a firsthand account of the situation and said the County Government in collaboration with the National Government was doing all it could to assist the families of victims.
Kenya Red Cross Society Secretary General Abbas Gullet revealed that so far some 2,792 pints of blood has been donated countrywide and commended Kenyans for coming out in large numbers.
“The response has so far been overwhelming and we expect more Kenyans to come forward. We have put in place adequate facilities to deal with the large turnout in the coming days,” he said.
He stated that the exercise is targeting to collect about 5,000 pints of blood in the coming days.
Some 175 people were wounded in Saturday’s attack that left at least 62 people dead.
Somali terror group Al-Shabaab has claimed responsibility for the attack, the biggest since the 1998 US Nairobi Embassy bombing that claimed the lives of over 270 people.