Nic Hailey hosts reception in honour of Dr Abbas Gullet

Nic Hailey with Abbas Gullet
Dr Abbas Gullet with UK High Commissioner Nic Hailey and Portuguese Head of Diplomatic Mission Luisa Fragoso. Photo: Twitter/KenyaRedCross

On Friday evening, the UK High Commissioner to Kenya, Nic Hailey, hosted a function honouring Kenya Red Cross Secretary General Dr. Abbas Gullet for being the recipient of the 2017 North-South Prize of the Council of Europe in recognition of his humanitarian work.

The award recognised the instrumental role Dr Gullet has played in building the Kenyan Red Cross Society into a leading society both in the African continent and within the Movement, increasing its capacity to respond to humanitarian crises in Kenya and beyond.

Dr Gullet was born in Modogashe, Garissa, in 1959. Orphaned at an early age, he was adopted and raised by a family in Mombasa, with his adoptive father becoming a role model for him.

After receiving his basic education from Buxton Primary School, he proceeded to continue his studies at Mombasa Technical. He worked for Kenya External Telecommunications Company and the Kenya Post and Telecommunications between 1978 and 1984.

His first role with the Kenya Red Cross Society came in 1985 when he worked as a medical Officer.

After several postings in Kenya and abroad, he was seconded by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRCS) to Kenya in 2001 as secretary general. During his tenure he transformed the Society from one that was facing multiple challenges, to a vibrant growing humanitarian organisation. For this achievement, he was named “UN in Kenya Person of the Year” in 2007.

Among the guests was Irish Ambassador Dr Vincent O’Neill who said he was “privileged” to be present, describing Dr Gullet as  “a hugely deserving recipient of the North/South Award,” adding that Kenya Red Cross as “a hugely effective and important Kenya humanitarian organisation.”

Tweeting after the event, which he described as a “wonderful evening”, Mr Gullet thanked Mr Hailey on behalf of his family for hosting them and to everyone who attended.