Bernard Gitau @benagitau
Leaders across the political divide yesterday condemned the DusitD2 Hotel terror attack, terming it a cowardly act against innocent people.
Led by National Super Alliance (Nasa) co-principals Raila Odinga, Kalonzo Musyoka and Musalia Mudavadi, the leaders condoled with the families of those who lost their lives during the attack.
Commending the security forces for a robust, rapid and coordinated response to the terror attack, they appealed to the international community not to issue travel advisories over the Tuesday attack.
In a joint statement, Raila and Kalonzo said the response to the attack saved lives of many civilians and reassured the country of its safety.
“We appeal to the international community to continue standing with Kenya. We thank the international community for standing with Kenya at this critical juncture,” said Raila.
He echoed President Uhuru Kenyatta’s address adding that the country saw a global coalition against terror in action in Tuesday’s attack.
“We assure the international community that we will stand with the government of Kenya and all forces for good in the global campaign against terrorism. We commend our security forces for the robust, rapid and coordinated response to this evil that saw lives saved and the country reassured,” said Raila.
He termed those who lost their lives as heroes in the war against international terrorism. “To the terrorists, take note that you shall never intimidate nor destroy the spirit of the people of Kenya by your beastly acts,” he said.
On his part, Kalonzo commended the quick and coordinated manner in which the attack was diffused, adding that lessons learnt from Westgate Shopping Mall attack six years ago helped combat the situation.
“We call upon the international community not to issue travel advisories and cancellation of bookings because the country remains secure for Kenyans and foreigners alike,” said Kalonzo.
He noted that unlike the Westgate attack that caught the country and security agencies off guard, Tuesday’s situation was handled professionally.
In a statement, Mudavadi hailed the Kenya Police and other security agencies for their swift reaction to the emergency.
“I hail your courageous commitment to service and pray for your own safety and security as you go about this difficult service to your nation and to fellow citizens. I call upon Kenyans to rally behind security forces,” he said.
Baringo Senator Gideon Moi said the attack was an attempt to instil fear but gallant security forces responded with bravery, diligence and clinical execution.
“This shows the masterminds of terror that the people of this country is ready to defend themselves anytime,” said Gideon.
Kitui governor Charity Ngilu commended Uhuru and Raila for coming together for a prosperous and secure nation.
“We will not be cowed in accepting defeat from terrorists but we must unite and forge together to fight terrorism,” he said.
Mandera Governor Ali Roba also commended security forces for their bravery and coordinated action against the attackers.
“Only through resilience and determination to move forward can we defeat terror,” he said in a statement. At the same time, the European Union condemned the attack saying it will stand with Kenya at this trying time.
“Kenya’s stand against terrorism, at home and abroad, is a necessary fight against a challenge that we all face-being it in Africa, in Europe or in the rest of the world- which will contribute to bringing peace, stability and prosperity to the country and the region and beyond,” said a statement from the EU spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Maja Kocijancic.
The Somali government also sent a message of condolence to the affected families and promised to support Kenya in the war against terror.