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Home / Health & Science

No evidence of rape at KNH so far, says Mailu

HEALTH & SCIENCEBy BENARD SANGA AND GRAHAM KAJILWA | Wed,Jan 24 2018 00:00:00 EAT
By BENARD SANGA AND GRAHAM KAJILWA | Wed,Jan 24 2018 00:00:00 EAT

 Health CS Cleopa Mailu. [Photo: Courtesy]

No official at Kenya National Hospital will step aside over allegations of rape at the facility, the Health Cabinet secretary has said.

Dr Cleopa Mailu on Tuesday described staff at the referral hospital as ‘civil servants of integrity’.

Speaking in Mombasa yesterday, the CS said no one had complained that they had been raped at the facility and that the ministry would not punish staff based on ‘mere allegations’.

Two reports

Mailu said the KNH board had compiled a report and handed it to him and that he was waiting for a second one from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) today. He added that he would make the reports public.

“This business of forcing people to step aside or resign based on just allegations should stop. We have to wait for the reports by the investigating agencies,” said Mailu.

He insisted that the ministry would not act without proof, adding that there were procedures of disciplining officials found to have flouted work ethics.

“It was our intention that we release the reports today, but I have so far only received the report from the KNH board and I’m waiting for the other one from the DCI,” said Mailu.

He said the KNH management had done its work by investigating every aspect of the allegations and assured Kenyans that patients at the facility were well protected.  

On Saturday, the ministry ordered a probe into claims that new mothers at the hospital were being raped.

The allegations first surfaced on social media, sparking outrage among Kenyans and human rights activists.

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Video footage

The KNH management and the doctors’ union have denied the claims, saying that after reviewing the facility’s security video footage, they were confident that no such incident had happened.

Mailu appeared to stick to the same script, saying no proof had so far been adduced by any victim to support the allegations.

The CS was in Mombasa for a meeting with the Parliamentary Committee on Health to deliberate on planned reforms in the ministry, including the introduction of a universal health care scheme in four years.

Anti-riot police yesterday prevented a confrontation between some activists protesting against the alleged mistreatment of mothers and angry staff at KNH.

A group of women activists who had stormed the hospital to protest against the alleged rapes were locked out by the police.

The workers, including morticians, who have been accused of carrying out the alleged assaults, had vowed to act if the activists entered the hospital.

About 3,000 lower cadre staff at KNH staged a go-slow in solidarity with the morticians.

They threatened to sue the whistle blower who made the rape allegations on social media.

The women had marched from Uhuru Park to the Ministry of Health headquarters at Community, where they were informed that the CS was not in.

However, their petition was received by an employer before they set off for KNH.

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