What you need to know:
- Nominated MCA Zulfa Hakim said the students at Garissa University College did not deserve to die that way.
- The residents, mostly Muslims, rebuked acts of terror, saying that Islam does not condone the killing of innocent people.
Residents of Eastleigh on Saturday turned up in their hundreds to demonstrate against the attack on Garissa University College.
The residents– business people, religious leaders and local politicians – marched along the streets in solidarity with the families of those who lost their lives when gunmen stormed the university, killing at least 148 people.
Led by the the Secretary General of the Eastleigh Business Community, Mr Ahmed Mohammed, the residents, mostly Muslims, rebuked acts of terror, saying that Islam does not condone the killing of innocent people.
“It is a really difficult time in the country, and we as the Muslims in Eastleigh condemn the attack, having suffered the brunt of terrorism in the past” Mr Mohammed said.
He said the terrorists aimed at separating the country on grounds of religion in order to push their agenda which is based on the divide and rule principle.
“We have lived together in peace for so long that we do not have to be separated now. In fact, this is the time to unite and cohere together and defeat our common enemy. The Al-Shabaab kill Muslims in Somalia, too, and coming to Kenya, they kill Christians to inflict bitterness among ourselves.” Mr Mohammed said.
Osman Adhow, Nairobi County MCA for Eastleigh North, said the government had to invest more in the security forces and intelligence and approach new forms of crime with new tactics.
“When terrorism strikes any part of the country, it is Eastleigh which suffers the most. Aside from losing loved ones and friends, we live in fear of terrorism affecting us as well as being victimised by the police. Our lives are usually disrupted after terror attacks, and we really should not be going through such kind of mourning as a country,” Mr Adhow said.
He reiterated the need for the government to invest more in community policing strategies such as the Nyumba Kumi initiative, as residents are usually the first people to receive information about the existence of threats in the communities.
Nominated MCA Zulfa Hakim said the students at Garissa University College did not deserve to die that way.
“The only way we can defeat terrorism is by uniting and by working together with our security forces. Security starts with every individual in Kenya,” she said.
“If this were a war of religion, Muslims would not be killed, but we have lost several of ours to terrorism and several others, among them MP Yussuf Hassan, have been seriously injured and rendered immobile at some point,” she said.
Bishop Joseph Wambugu of the Cathedral of Hope Mission, asked residents to provide information about suspicious people and when they are aware of evil plans, as they could be victims. He asked the Interior Ministry to open a police station in Eastleigh.