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Mpeketoni buries its dead, life goes back to normal

19 June 2014, 18:37 Victor Tinto

Nairobi - Life is slowly getting back to normal in Mpeketoni Lamu, just a few days after the massacre of 60 people by supposed Al-Shabaab militants.

The town still resembles a war zone with the charred remains of buildings and vehicles still evident, this four full days after the Sunday night attack.

GSU officers, Kenya Defence Forces personnel and regular police who have taken to the town to re-assure residents of their safety and security are also there for all to see.

In some places, there are still spluttering of blood left behind by the shootings and not too far from the town centre there is the make shift mortuary set up by the Kenya Red Cross.

Having been here early Monday, I would have been forgiven for thinking that the town would never rise on its feet again.

But alas, life goes on.

Funerals dominate business in the area, with families saying farewell to deceased relatives and others preparing for burial.

Some shops though are open once again, with the realization that things have to move forward.

Samuel Kamau's shop was unaffected by the melee, with the gangsters targeting the big buildings and with his merchandise intact, he has opened for business.

" I had to open because people were in need of basic necessities and I had them. We cannot all close shop and sit. We have to move on, he said.

At the nearby Equity Bank building which was extensively damaged and looted by the gangsters, debris has already been cleared with rumour being that the bank is looking to re-start as soon as possible.

Down the road on the way to Kibaoni, Fatma Hassan has re-opened her grocery shack to provide whatever she can to residents.

" God is with us, we have to leave all that has happened behind and move on, she says.

Boda Boda operators were severely hit by the attacks, with the gangsters killing several of them during the raid but Juma Munala, who operates between Kibaoni and Mpeketoni is back at work.

" I am back at work. I have lost so many friends but I will only honour them by continuing to work and ferry people to their destinations, he said.

It is expected that by sometime next week, the administration police post that was raided and torched by the assailants will be fully operational, as will be key government installations to slowly ease Mpeketoni back to normalcy.

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