Justus Nyang’aya, a Seventh-day Adventist and director of
Amnesty International for Kenya, was attacked in his home near Nairobi on the
evening of December 17 by gun-toting gangsters. Unfortunately, this is not an
uncommon occurrence in a city well-known for its random violence. The gangsters
shot him three times while he was trying to protect his wife and three daughters.
Speaking to the Daily Nation newspaper from
his hospital bed in Karen, Nyang'aya said, “He shot my arm while I tried to push back
the door. I did not want them to enter because my children were inside. He shot
my arm. Again, he shot me here (he pointed to his chest). I kept on fighting,
and he shot me again, and there was so much blood. At last, he pointed his gun
straight at my face and squeezed the trigger, but there was no bullet left.”
The assailants then hurriedly took Nyang’aya’s wallet and some electronic items
in the living room and left. Nyang’aya’s wife and daughters were left unharmed.
Nyang’aya has since been released from the hospital and is expected
to fully recover. In a telephone interview with Adventist Review from his home, he expressed his thankfulness
that God had spared his life. He told how his wife Apondi drove him to the hospital, urging
him to repeat “God is good all the time” to help him stay conscious. She then hit
a pothole in the darkness, which caused the car to break down. They were
rescued by a passing motorist, “a good Samaritan who had the courage to stop at
11:30 at night and take an individual who was covered with blood into his car.
That kind of help is very unusual, and I pray that the Almighty may bless him,”
Although his children were traumatized by the attack, the
whole family continues to sleep peacefully at night. “We don’t fear another
attack. Seeing what God has done gives us the assurance that He will continue
to give us strength, confidence, and protection. We sleep peacefully,” says
Nyang’aya doesn’t believe that he was targeted for his
activities as head of an international organization, but rather that “it was a
random incident.” The region’s chief of police expressed his resolve to “ensure
that these people will be apprehended.”
Amnesty International is an independent global movement of
more than 3 million supporters, members, and activists in more than 150
countries and territories who campaign to end grave abuses of human rights.