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January 20, 2019

Boy, 14, dies from food poisoning, mother and siblings hospitalised in Webuye

The family and siblings of the dead boy at the Webuye county hospital where they were admitted after consuming a poisonous meal on Wednesday.Photo/Brian Ojamaa
The family and siblings of the dead boy at the Webuye county hospital where they were admitted after consuming a poisonous meal on Wednesday.Photo/Brian Ojamaa

A 14 year-old boy died at Webuye county hospital in what doctors attributed consumption of a poisonous meal on Wednesday.

The boy's mother and his four other siblings from from Machakaha village in Webuye west constituency were admitted at the facility.

The six jointly ate ugali and traditional vegetables - derived from pumpkin leaves - which is said to have caused their complications.

The meal, locally known as Seveve, was prepared by the boy's mother Phylis Nanyama on Wednesday evening.

Phylis said that one of her daughters, who had gone to visit their grandmother, was not at home and was therefore not affected.

"I sent one of my children to a nearby posho mill to buy maize and grind flour. When he came back, I added to the flour that was still in the house before preparing Ugali," she said.

She said that around 9pm, the children started complaining of stomach ache, which presented symptoms of diarrhea and vomiting.

"I alerted the neighbors who came and carried us to the nearest dispensary at Bokoili, where the 14 year-old later died.

Phylis said that she had often prepared a meal of the vegetables sourced at her farm.

"The clinicians at the dispensary then referred us to Bungoma referral hospital where we were given some tablets and told to go back home," she said.

She told journalists at Webuye hospital that when they went back home, the situation worsened and had to be rushed for treatment.

"I suspect that a neighbour whom I fell out with poisoned the flour. I have had used the same flour  without any complications before," Phylis said.

"We want the police to investigate this matter. The neighbour has not even bothered to visit us in hospital and only keeps saying we will be fine," she said.

"Am a mere farmer and my husband works in Nairobi as a casual labourer. I don’t know how we will foot the bill in this hospital and cater for the burial of my child," the woman lamented.

She appealed to Bungoma governor Ken Lusaka to intervene so that the county can foot her bills and that of her children Bosco Mukono, 11, Daniel Mukono, 4, Bradly Mukono, 2.

Her two other children Fidel Mutoro and Yvonne Mutoro were also hospitalised.

Patrick Mutoro, Webuye hospital medical superintendent, said medical tests of the meal indicated traces of a poisonous substance.

"They are responding well to medication. The family might have been affected by acute food poisoning that might have been caused by poor cooking," he said.

 

 

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