Sierra Leoneans safe after Al-Shabab attacks In Kenya

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The Sierra Leone diplomatic mission in Nairobi, which also serves as permanent representative to the United Nations Office at Nairobi (UNON), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) has confirmed her staff and all Sierra Leoneans based in the Kenyan capital are safe and sound.

This confirmation was made by His Excellency Peter Joseph Francis -Sierra Leone High Commissioner to Kenya and Permanent Representative to the UNON, UNEP and UN-Habitat, during an exclusive phone call interview with this writer in the evening hours of Tuesday 15th January 2019.

The confirmation of the HE Peter Joseph Francis of the safety of Sierra Leonean diplomats and Sierra Leonean citizens in Nairobi comes as Kenyan authority unleashed massive security in its capital- Nairobi after suspected al-Shabab militants attack at Dusit D2 Hotel, 14 Riverside Drive, Westlands, Nairobi, killing five (5) people and three (3) causalities currently admitted at the Age Kahn Hospital in Nairobi.

Meanwhile, according to Kenyan Nation Police Service release dated Tuesday 15th January 2019, and signed by the Inspector General Joseph Boinnet, at about 3pm EAT (12pm GMT, “a group of armed assailants attacked the Dusit complex in a suspected terror attack.”

On his efforts thus far in checking on and ensuring the safety of Sierra Leoneans in Nairobi, HE Peter Joseph Francis said sooner he got the information of the attack; he got the entire staff of Sierra Leonean High Commission  in Nairobi in a single building that is electronically protected.

HE Peter Joseph Francis further confirmed that the Deputy Sierra Leone Special Representative to the United Nation (UN) in New York, Madam Victoria Sulaiman who was attending the UN meeting on the Environment, she was in his residence at 158 Mimosa Drive off Mimosa Road, Runda, Nairobi, doing fine.

HE Peter Joseph Francis said, however, he was worried about the welfare of a single Sierra Leonean whose office is said to be in the same building that was attacked. Upon reaching the family of the man, , HE Peter Joseph Francis said the family of the Sierra Leonean confirmed to him that the Sierra Leone is currently out of Nairobi and is currently in Uganda on another assignments.

Thus he said, so far every Sierra Leonean in Nairobi is safe and sound and that the Sierra Leone High Commission, situated at 57 Gigiri Court off UN Crescent, Gigiri, Nairobi, Kenya, has already resumed operation.

So far, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta during his statement on the attack on the morning hours of Wednesday 17th January 2019 from Nairobi said 14 people were killed and about 75 others rescued from the hotel. He said, the operation is over and that the militants have been neutralised.

President Uhuru Kenyatta during his televised broadcast thanked all Kenyans and international community for the robust and prompt action and the solidarity they show in combating the attack. He assured of safety for all.

 

 

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Abu Bakarr Tarawally is a Journalist based in Freetown. He works for the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation as a radio producer. He has once served as Editor for a few newspapers in Freetown, including Sierra Express Media, The Exclusive Newspaper and his own newspaper, the Daily Express Publications. He is a teacher trainer, and loves writing and reading a lot. Email: abstarawally@gmail.com. Call +232 88601277 or +2327661303.

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