By Cyrus Ombati
Terrorists struck at the heart of every parent by planting a homemade bomb in a church’s Sunday school wing, which on exploding killed one child and injured others.
The attack at St Polycarp ACK in Nairobi’s Juja Road Estate left Kenyans wondering why innocent children memorising biblical verses and learning new songs were targets of ghastly attacks that left them in emotional and physical distress.
Nine-year-old Ian John Macharia’s deskat school on Monday will be empty, and teachers will be struggling to explain to his classmates why he will no longer be with them; he was killed by faceless people whose cause he does not know.
Only last Saturday, Macharia celebrated his ninth birthday not knowing it would be his last. His head took the impact of the blast and he succumbed to the gruesome injuries at the nearby Radiant Hospital.
In a cruel twist to the terror attack, Macharia’s father who is ailing is admitted at Kenyatta National Hospital and later in the day the St Polycarps faithful was to raise money to buy him a wheelchair.
Police linked the attacks to Al-Shabaab militia, which is at war with Kenya Defence Forces in Somalia.
The wounds on the young children spoke volumes about the indiscriminate craving for blood by the attackers, and opened the eyes of Kenyans to the fact that no one is safe as long as merchants of terror goaded by religious fundamentalism are still on the prowl.
The nine-year old boy was killed and nine other children injured when a homemade bomb planted by the suspected terrorists blew up the church, which borders Eastleigh.
The church is on Chai Road where the improvised explosive device (IED) went off at about 10.30am.
It later emerged that the terrorists planted the device outside the room where the children have their Sunday class, a fact that police said reduced the casualty level. There were 15 children inside at the time.
Overcome by grief, Macharia’s mother, Jane Siovia wept uncontrollably at the hospital where her son died, and was unable to speak to journalists.
“Why? Why? Why attack the innocent and indefensible?” was all that Ms Siovia asked repeatedly as tears rolled down her cheek at the hospital.