HEALING TOGETHER

Crocodile, anyone? Singwaya fest celebrates unity post-terror attacks

Festival started in 2015 to help healing from Mpeketoni attacks

In Summary

• More than 100 people were massacred by the militants in Mpeketoni, Kibaoni, Witu and Hindi in Lamu and property worth millions destroyed between 2014 and 2015. 

• Festival official says the annual event has helped build a good image of the region since the attacks.

Crocodile meat, anyone? It's a delicacy. Or perhaps roasted mice or fried termites?

For those less adventurous, there's always goat.

These were among the dishes featured on Wednesday during the fifth annual Singwaya Festival to help the region heal from terrorist tacks.

The festival was introduced in 2015 to help communities to heal from numerous al Shabaab terrorist attacks that killed scores of civilians and security officers between 2014 and 2015. 

More than 100 people were massacred by the militants in Mpeketoni, Kibaoni, Witu and Hindi in Lamu and property worth millions of shillings destroyed. 

The festival ran all day through the night at the Pwani Complex in Hindi town in Lamu West. It was attended by at least 1,000 people from Kenya and other countries.

Festival committee chairperson George Mukabi said the party brought together various communities living in Lamu to celebrate cohesion, peace, trust and oneness.

This event has been key in assuring guests, tourists and the entire world that things are back to normal. These events instil confidence in investors.
Festival liaison officer James Tuva

Speaking on Thursday, Mukabi said all communities must join hands and heal together to make development possible.

“The response since the festival was introduced has been amazing. It shows the desire for healing for the entire region,” he said. 

Festival liaison officer James Tuva said the festival had boosted unity and cohesion among the various tribes and improved the region's image.

“This event has been key in assuring guests, tourists and the entire world that things are back to normal. These events instil confidence in investors," Tuva said.

This year'sfestival included competitions in dancing, painting, tug of war and bicycle racing, among others.

The festival featured delicacies including ngwena or crocodile meat, kadzora or roasted mich, a delicacy of the Mijikenda, particularly the Giriama.
 

Festival communications officer Stephen Karani said soccer competitions, boda boda races and fishing competitions will be introduced.

Edited by R.Wamochie