Nairobi residents are yet in another shock after an inspection task which was conducted by Environment Cabinet Secretary, Keriako Tobiko and his team at Nairobi river. Among the gabages found in the river were a lot of used HIV kits and most of them showed positive results. On seeing the kits, Tobiko termed it as a national security threat.
Other waste found in the river were; mountains of blood bags, syringes and gloves which were found at Kirichwa river, a tributary of Nairobi River at Kawangware slums.
Tobiko’s words captured the calamity that is supposed to be a life-sustaining source of water for many Nairobians; ”This is dangerous, we need to know and prosecute individuals and health institutions disposing medical waste on the riverbed.”
National Environment Management Authority (Nema) director general Prof Geoffrey Wahungu had initially directed that medical waste be buried or burned, but after consultations, he urged his team to collect the waste for proper disposal in incinerators.
Unlicensed clinics and health facilities around Kawangware and other informal settlements with no incinerators and other waste management facilities have been blamed for what could be termed attempted perpetration of mass deaths.
Contacted for comment on the disposed medical waste, deputy Public Health director James Wainana said; ”It is a sad state of affair and should not have happened.” His vow to deal with the culprits led to the arrest of five medics operating reportedly unlicensed clinics in the area.