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Over 20 People Treated, 2 Admitted For Consuming Contaminated Mutura In Thika.

About 20 people have been treated and two others hospitalised after consuming what is believed to be contaminated mutura or the African sausage and soup in Magogoni Shopping Centre Thika East District.

Shortly after the enjoying this contaminated delicacy on Monday last week sold by a veteran local mutura seller popularly known as ‘Wa Jimmy’, the victims started experiencing stomach aches, vomiting and diarrhoearing. Among the victims were several pupils and students from nearby schools.

One of the victims, Eunice Wamaitha, narrated how she bought a sh. 20 piece of mutura and shared with her 4-year old grandson. The following morning, the grandson complained of stomachache and advised him to relief himself at nearby bush. Upon relieving himself, he called out his grandmother telling her that he had relieved himself oily faeces.
Moments later, she too experienced the same scenario.

“I bought a sh. 20 mutura and shared it with my grandson. When he went to help himself in the bush the following morning, he called me claiming that he had relieved himself some faeces that looked like oil. I also experienced the same. The son to my brother’s daughter had also eaten it and he too, had the same problem,” said Wamaitha.

Another victim, Lilian Wanjiku, narrated how she bought mutura from the same trader and had to be rushed to Maguguni Health Dispensary when she started vomiting and diarrhoea.

She explained how she experienced some unusual taste in the mutura but this was being neutralised by the ‘kachumbari’ that she was served to accompany the mutura.

“On Monday, I bought a piece of Mutura from Wa Jimmy’s butchery. The mutura tasted funny but this was neutralised by the kachumbari that accompanied it.  It did not affect me till the following day when I started developing stomachache and diarrhoea. I was rushed to the dispensary when this got worse. I have been attended twice since then but am now recuperating,” said Wanjiku.

Wanyoike Mengere, a shopkeeper in the area said that he sensed something was amiss when one lady came and bought four ‘Eno’ sachets and dashed away leaving her cash balance behind. When she came back to claim for it, I enquired from her if they had eaten the mutura.

“Since there was one going round that some people had fallen ill from consuming mutura, I asked her if by any chance, her kids had eaten the same. She confirmed that her two children had eaten and they were at the time diarrhoearing seriously. She claims that by good luck, they did not bring some to her as it was their norm,” said Wanyoike.

However, Wanyoike refuted rumours going round the area as well as social media claims that his sister, who happened to die in the same period, had succumbed to 'mutura' poisoning. He clarified that it was just coincidental that her death happened at the same time with the food poisoning incident adding that she died of unrelated complications.

“The deceased is my sister and our investigations have revealed that she did not die out of eating this mutura. She had been ailing for some time now. Otherwise, one of her sons had eaten the mutura but he has confirmed to us that his mother never ate the mutura,” he said.

The locals are now appealing to the public health officers to reign on roadside food kiosks saying that they are a threat to the health of the residents. They are demanding for thorough investigations so as to establish the source of the meat. It is suspected that the meat had been bought from Kia Maiko in Nairobi since the butcher never slaughtered any goats but dealt with muturas and soup.

“I would like them to do a thorough investigation to establish where there muturas come from because this is not a butchery. It is just a shed for selling mituras and soup. I am a frequent customer in that butchery. I buy soup for my dog every day. My dog diarrhoeared for three days to a point that it was unable to stand, said Alfred Karenge.

The 'mutura' base identified as 'Kwa Baba Jimmy' has been in existence for many years and such cases have never been witnessed.

Efforts to get a confirmation report from the Chief Officer of Health Stephen Njuguna as to how many cases the dispensary has treated on the same went futile.

This report comes in the wake of the interdiction of 23 public health officers in Kiambu County, who include their director and his deputy, for what was refered to as gross misconduct.

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