Tuesday, 24 Sep 2013

All in a day's work: 'It's my job to cover these stories'

By Boni Odinga, Internews in Kenya
Soon after the attack on Westgate Mall in Nairobi, images of the unfolding event started streaming in on social media. The first picture that captured my imagination was the image of a policeman, seated down clutching his abdomen after getting shot. It disturbed me and I wondered what was going through his mind. Being someone who has been caught in the heat of the moment before, I posted it on my facebook.

I later noticed that there were more images of the same police man online and I decided to track them and see if I could piece together the sequence of events for this policeman who I hope survived the incident.

Just what could be going through his mind?
Perhaps it was his off day and he had been  called upon to check out
what was going on at Westgate.

This perhaps was the beginning, not finding much action!...

….and here even finding time to look into the camera before things went haywire.

After going through the sequence of pictures and feeling sorry for the guy, I must admit that I admired the courage of Reuters Chief photographer Goran Tomasevic who I have since learnt is a seasoned war correspondent. There is surely need for training of Kenyan photojournalists in this field. I have also since found his blog and his account of what happened which is not similar to mine but quite refreshing.

 “I’ve seen a lot of different situations of people dying but I always say it’s my job to cover these stories. If I can help someone, I will. I always believe people should see how it is. Sometimes it’s terrible but still, they should know the reality,” says Goran on his blog.

But do the people at home sit and wish that someone would give them images of what is happening inside a place where people are under attack? Is the witness account not enough? Are the images worth losing one’s life over? What do you think?

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