Nine years after post election violence, bullet still stuck in my breast

PAMELA AKOTH [PHOTO/JANET OKUMU]

Story by JANET OKUMU for eDaily.

Nine years after the 2007/08 Post Election Violence that left at least 1,300 people dead and over 600,000 others displaced, victims of the violence are yet to come to terms with the suffering they underwent as they are still living in pain and agony.

In Kibera’s Lindi area in Nairobi, Pamela Akoth, a victim of the violence, still lives with a bullet that was lodged into her breast nine years ago.

Akoth narrates that she was in her house on the night of December 31, 2007 when the bullet hit her.

“I was just in the house when all over sudden dust engulfed the whole building and blinded me and I fell down. My neighbours came in and found me lying down and a bullet cartridge lodged on the wall,” she narrates.

“I regained consciousness a few minutes later as they were administering first aid on me and that is when I realized that I had been shot on the left breast.”

The mother of two narrates how she spent hours at the Kenyatta National Hospital before being attended to but no surgical operation was conducted to remove the bullet from the breast.

She told Citizen Digital that she has been forced to live with the bullet in her breast due to lack of funds to facilitate a surgical operation to remove it, a situation she says has stalled her life.

“Before the incident, I was a businesswoman, importing omena from Tanzania and selling them here in Kibera. Now I’ve been reduced to begging for food for my children, school fees and even medications in cases of illness,” she added.

A few meters from Ms Akoth’s house lives David Odhiambo who has a metal plate placed in his leg after he failed to raise requisite funds to undergo a surgery to remove it.

“I was a driver before the post poll chaos, but at the moment I cannot do that job because of the metal still lodged in my left leg,” he says.

With the 2017 general election drawing closer, the victims are appealing to the government to accord them the necessary support, even as they pray for a peaceful poll.

 

 

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