By Renson Buluma
A couple has been sentenced to six months in jail for refusing to have their two-and-a-half-months-old son vaccinated against polio.
Busia Principal Magistrate Barbara Achieng found Wildren Dome and his wife Janerose Auma guilty of infringing on the child’s right by declining to give his name to medical personnel.
The two aged 36 and 35 committed the offence on August 24 in their home in Sio Port sub-location, Samia District.
The couple was each found guilty of the two counts and sentenced to three months for each or pay a fine of Sh5,000 per count.
The court was informed that the couple ‘willingly denied’ their child (whose name is unknown) the right to health and medical care by refusing public health officers to immunise him against polio contrary to Section 9 of the Children’s Act 2001.
The accused cited their ‘Injili religion’ as the reason behind their refusal to allow their child to be vaccinated.
They allegedly locked him in the house to stop public health workers from immunising him. The health workers then notified the District Public Health Officer who reported the matter to the police and the couple was arrested.
In mitigation, the accused pleaded for leniency saying they wanted to protect their ‘only son’ from the side effects of immunisation.
But in her ruling Ms Achieng said: “The two are hereby directed to avail the child for immunisation before they are released from custody.”
- Relief as surgeons re-attach man’s severed private organ
- Can medical board really bite finger that feeds it?
- Mother claims nurse watched her newborn die
- Governor’s encounter with leaky roofs in school
- Police arrest former councillor for piracy
- Cord leaders allege ploy by State to ‘kill’ devolution through Ministry