Victims of snake bites plead for compensation

Relatives of victims of snake bites have appealed to the Kenya Wildlife Service to compensate them for loss of their kin.

Zachary Okello, who lost a wife to a snake bite said he had followed due process as required by law in seeking compensation for the loss.

His wife Judith Nabwire was bitten by a snake along the road in Esirimba, Matayos Constituency in February 2016.

She was rushed to Busia County Referral for treatment but there was no anti-venom at the hospital and she eventually died.

Okello visited the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) Western regional office and filled a form that would lead to compensation that has not been forthcoming since.

Section 62 of the Wildlife Conservation and Management Act, 2013 provides that a person who suffers any bodily injury from or is killed by any animal, the person injured or in the case of a deceased person, any other person who was dependent upon him at the date of his death may make application to a district committee seeking compensation for injury or death.

Okello said he will not tire in his quest to get compensation for the loss of his wife.

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“My wife left me with children, feeding them and paying school fees has remained an uphill task for me I hope the Government will listen to our pleas,” Okello maintained.

He wants Government to equip public hospitals with anti-venom drugs to avoid cases of people dieying due to lack of treatment occasioned by unavailability of the drugs.

Culumbunus Maliga is the father to the late Victor Maliga. The boy was also bitten on his way from fetching water in their Murende Village, Matayos Constituency in 2015.

Autopsy was done and the doctor discovered he died after being attacked by the snake. Four years down the line Mr Maliga is yet to get compensated.

“I have not received any communication from KWS office for the last four years, what we want is compensation,” said Maliga.

John Barasa is also another victim of snake bite. He was attacked by the serpent on his left leg at around 7pm on his way home from Victor Maliga’s funeral.

He was taken to the hospital by his family and survived. Barasa claims he met one of the KWS officers in Kakamega who took him through steps to follow before he is compensated. He filled the form and returned as he was told.

“We have been asking for compensation but KWS is telling us to wait as they were processing money,” said Barasa.

Brian Kisiangani, a KWS warden, said they received a number of claims from Busia arising from snake bite and crocodile attacks. Victims of the attacks and relatives of the deceased he said took the form which were filled and returned.

“We did our part as KWS officers by taking the forms to the ministry and are now with the treasury. We would like to see those people compensated so we are following up,” said Kisiangani.

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RelativesKenya Wildlife ServiceZachary OkelloSnake bitesCompensationsMatayos Constituency