Are We really One?
by NjukiMartin Posted on 19/06/2014
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On 21 September 2013, al-shabaab attacked Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya. The attack, which lasted until 24 September, resulted in at least 67 deaths, including four attackers. Over 175 people were reportedly wounded.

Kenyans and people living in Kenya embarked on a volunteer drive for funds, blood donation, services and other physical goods that would assist to alleviate the situation that came about as a result of the attack.

Safaricom provided a zero-rated paybill number 848484 to be used for the funds raising. In less than 24 hours, volunteers had contributed over Ksh 27 million via the mobile money service. In total, over Kshs 100M was collected. 71,921,192 via M-PESA, Kshs. 410,157 from the diaspora and additionally Safaricom and MPESA Foundations contributed Kshs. 30 Million.

Kenyans used the #WeAreOne Hash tag on twitter to mobilise volunteers of every kind to be part of this.

Fast forward 16 June 2014. Al-Shabaab attacked Lamu county. 60 people are dead! By 19th June 2014, reports from the ground is that bodies are rotting under tents. Are we really one? 

What is the difference between the Mpeketoni and Westgate victims? We raised over 100 milion from the pockets of poor people, contributing even 10 Kshs and donating blood in tonnes. All this to take care of people with billions in their bank accounts. People with medical cover for their unborn babies and pet dogs. Yet now we have left our needy in the cold. At the mercies of an enemy and  in the hands of a government too slow to act. 

Why have we not seen a zero-rated paybill number to be used for the funds raising? 



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Njuki Martin JM
About the Writer NjukiMartin
OCCUPATION Computer Science

I have purposed to be very keen on the role of ICT in today’s world and in shaping the future towards a global economic system. I therefore strive for excellence in whatever I do through teamwork, training and learning so as to be competent with the necessary social skills and hands-on-knowledge required in developing market oriented solutions to the challenges and problems that face us.


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