Woman, four children in hospital after botched suicide

A woman and her four children are fighting for their lives at Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital after a botched suicide.

Mercy Anyango, 29, and her children aged 13, nine, seven and five were admitted with open wounds caused by knife stabs.

Anyango is said to have stabbed the children and turned the kitchen knife on herself after what she termed as ‘irreparable’ domestic misunderstanding with her husband.

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Neighbours broke into the house to save the five before rushing them to hospital.

Witnesses heard noises of the children from Anyango’s house in Awasi, Nyando Sub County.

“When we moved to check, we saw her stab one child after another, forcing us to break in and disarm her,” said a neighbour.

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The neighbour’s sentiments were corroborated with that of Anyango who admitted to having locked the children in the house and started stabbing them randomly.

According to Anyango who is married in Kosele, Homa Bay County, she separated with her husband of five children, George Oketch, following numerous domestic squabbles.

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Anyango said in a bid to fend for her children, she moved away from the troubled home, to a nearby village where she got casual jobs at a farm.

“The person who gave me the job understood my situation and gave me a house within his compound, where I lived with my children,” she said.

But Anyango claimed that the father of her children was uncomfortable with her living in the same village, threatening to kill her, forcing her to move to Awasi in Kisumu County.

Her employer said Oketch had been visiting their home, threatening to harm her family should she send any money to Anyango, with claims that she was part of the troubles facing the family.

Yesterday, Anyango who claimed to have been overwhelmed by Oketch's stalking decided to take her life and that of her children.

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“I could not fend for my children, and my husband had also declined to support them. I needed to rest.”

Oketch admitted that Anyango is his wife, and that they had separated, but he denied being the cause of the botched suicide.

“She is the one who moved out of our family home with all our children, but our 15-year old first born managed to return,” he said.

He said Anyango had been married in the home where she had been claiming to be working in a farm, a situation which prompted him to try to take away his children, but Anyango declined.

“This is an issue which we have been following through the Children's Department so that I could take my children, and she moves on with her life, but the matter has not been settled. I was surprised to receive a call that she attempted to kill herself and the children,” said Oketch.

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Dr Brian Amata said the patients are out of danger despite the numerous injuries sustained.

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Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral HospitalHoma Bay Countydomestic squabbles