12 Kenyans hospitalised after eating poisonous coronavirus relief food
London, May 26, 2020 (AltAfrica)-Coronavirus relief food allegedly donated by an NGO in Kenya, William Ruto Foundationin has landed 12 people in hospital occasioned by suspected poising
Kiambu Governor James Nyoro on Monday confirmed that 12 people were admitted to health facilities after eating harmful relief food that had been donated.
Kiambu Governor James Nyoro says 12 who consumed donated food rushed to Tigoni, Kiambu and Thika Level 5 Hospitals. pic.twitter.com/F6FWqMR42h— Daily Nation (@dailynation) May 25, 2020
He said they were picked up by a county medical team from Karai and Nachu wards in Kikuyu subcounty.
“I’ve been informed that 12 people have been picked up for treatment and taken to Lusigetti Hospital for those without severe symptoms and those who were greatly affected have been taken to Kiambu and Thika level 5 hospitals,” he said during a press briefing at the county headquarters
William Ruto Foundation has however distanced itself from claims on social media linking it to the poisonous relief food.
The DP’s communications secretary David Mugonyi said the people behind the contaminated food were engaging “in political thuggery”. He said the food in question did not come from the foundation.
Mugonyi said the foundation had been delivering relief packages through “formal and known networks” such as churches and mosques and with the participation of local leaders to ensure tracking and tracing.
He said the food in question was hurriedly thrown to residents from a moving vehicle with fake branding.
However, county commissioner Wilson Wanyanga said no foodstuffs had been distributed in Nachu area apart from those donated by Ruto and Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung’wa a week ago.
On May 20, Ruto distributed food to families in Nachu, Kikuyu constituency, in the company of MP Kimani Ichung’wah.
“It is a challenge to us to establish the source of the contaminated food as it bore the names of the deputy president and Kikuyu MP foundations and the only food distributed in the area was from them a week ago,” Wanyanga said.
He said the donations by Ruto and Ichung’wa did not follow the procedures laid out by the county government
“We are calling upon the people not to accept foodstuffs that have not passed through the county distribution channels since their sources may not be known their sources,” the commissioner added.
Ichung’wah, however, linked the poisonous food to politics.
“Please be cautious as evil people who are distributing these may poison people for politics! A family that consumed the sugar suspect it was poisonous as two of them have been treated after consuming it,” the MP said.
Governor Nyoro urged all beneficiaries of the donations to return them and go for medical checkup.
“I have been informed that a lot of residents who took the food have returned it to their area chiefs in Gikambura and Nachu area,” he said.
The county chief said samples of the foodstuffs were taken for analysis in a government laboratory. He said sugar that was distributed had adverse effects of corroding the mouth and the throat.
Nyoro said the national government and the counties have clear donation channels that should be used to avoid such incidents.
“Anybody who wants to donate foodstuffs to the needy in the county should pass through the county government programme of distributing food. This would have helped know the genesis of the contaminated food,” Nyoro said.
He cautioned against the politicisation of donations and urged all MPs to make donations through the county government.
“We will not allow politics to be played with food distribution. We tell our people not to accept food donations that have not passed the county distributions programme, as we cannot ascertain where it has come from or the intentions of the one donating,” Nyoro warned.
He demanded thorough investigations so those behind the donations are prosecuted.