By Ally Jamah
Joseph Muli Mbithi, a 36-year-old man in Nairobi’s Kawangware area, has not risen from his bed for close to three years now. He does all bodily functions, including long and short calls, while lying in bed.
Doctors who have tried treating him say the sensitive nerves controlling movement of his hands; legs and body were damaged after suffering the barbaric beating by gangsters, causing massive internal bleeding in his head.
Muli was returning home from work on the night of September 25, 2009, and just a few metres from his house, thugs suddenly sprung from the dark and started beating him with metal bars and rungus mercilessly.
“They took away everything in my pocket, including money and a mobile phone before disappearing back into the darkness. I slowly dragged myself home thanking God that at least I was still alive,” recalls Muli, in a slurry voice.
Lying on bed in a tiny two-room house, which he shares with his mother Francisca Ndunge Mbithi and his younger brother Albanus Muthini. His arms and legs are frozen stiffly; he can neither stretch nor fold them. He cannot rise up and is fed on bed.
His room is filled with plastic jars, which serve as his loo.
“That night my head was aching very much. So my mother bought me some painkillers and I went to bed hoping the pain would have subsided by morning. But alas! The following morning, the pain had gotten worse,” he recalls in between gasps of breath.
Several days later, family members noticed Muli, speaking incoherently and acting strangely. On the seventh day after the attack, the family was thrown into a spin when Muli suddenly collapsed and started foaming in the mouth.
“We rushed him to Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) where doctors ordered for a head scan. When results came through, doctors immediately rushed him to the Intensive Care Unit citing it as an emergency,” recalls Muli’s mother, who has been taking care of him since.
They said he had suffered a serious internal bleeding in the head and was even lucky that he had not expired a few days earlier. They had to perform major operations on his head to stanch the bleeding inside.