Measles jab: MP threatens to sue

Elgeyo-Marakwet County Senator, Kipchumba Murkomen from (right), the county Governor Alex Tolgos and Marakwet East MP Kangogo Bowen during the burial of two children who died after receiving a measles jab on September 12, 2015. The burial ceremony was held at Toroko Primary School. PHOTO | JARED NYATAYA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • The politicians said they would petition Parliament to revert the health function back to the national government.
  • But Senator Kipchumba Murkomen differed with Mr Kangogo over the threat to go to court and the attempt to revert the Health function to the national government.

Politicians want the government to compensate the families of two babies who died after receiving a measles jab.

Speaking at their burial yesterday in Kerio Valley, the leaders criticised the government for handling the issue in a casual manner and rejected claims by the Health ministry that the medic was a quack.

The politicians said they would petition Parliament to revert the health function back to the national government.

The babies, Brian Kimutai Kiptoo and Luciana Jepchumba Kemboi, both aged 9 months were buried in Kapchesek and Kobil villages, respectively.

Speaking during the joint funeral at Toroko Primary School yesterday, Marakwet East MP Kangogo Bowen said: “I will personally take this matter to Parliament and petition the House to look into the challenges in the Health function. In case the county governments are unable to manage the docket, they should let it go.”

Mr Kangongo said the relevant authorities should move with speed and release results of the investigations.

The MP also said he would join the community in suing the county government for negligence.

But Senator Kipchumba Murkomen differed with Mr Kangogo over the threat to go to court and the attempt to revert the Health function to the national government.

OUT-OF-COURT

“This is a pure case of negligence and I want you, the county government and the parents of the deceased, to strike out-of-court compensation. The families are already stressed and we can’t drag them through court processes,” said Mr Murkomen.

The senator, however, agreed that county governments were grappling with teething problems but should be helped in strengthening the docket because healthcare had realised significant improvement.

“I can tell you that health is far much better now than the way it used to be,” he said.

The senator urged the governor of Elgeyo Marakwet, Mr Alex Tolgos, to ensure the county equips hospitals with relevant storage equipment to preserve drugs.

Mr Tolgos also said his government would engage the victims’ families to resolve the matter amicably.

Tutaongea na wao ndio tuone vile tutasuluhisha hayo manaeno ingawa hakuna kiwango kinaweza toshana na maisha ya mtu kupotea. (We will sit and see how to compensate though no amount is worth loss of life),” said the governor.

He also defended county governments, saying they are able to manage the health function, adding that the unfortunate deaths of children was an isolated incident.

“In fact, vaccination is coordinated by the national government and all the drugs are sourced from the Kenya Medical Supplies Agency,” said Tolgos.

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