MP presents bill seeking to declare cancer National disaster

Laikipia Women Representative Catherine Waruguru at a past event. The MP wants cancer declared a national disaster. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]
As Kenyans continue to mourn Bomet Governor Joyce Laboso, pressure is mounting on the Government to declare cancer a national disaster.

Laikipia Woman Representative Catherine Waruguru wants President Uhuru Kenyatta to declare it a national disaster as the disease continues to claim the lives of many Kenyans.

The lawmaker has already presented a Bill to the National Assembly.

 The Bill has passed through the Budget and Appropriation committee and now awaits scrutiny by the parliamentary committee on health.

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The legislator called on the Sabina Chege- led committee of health to do the final and last scrutiny on the Cancer Bill 2019 so that it can be published for debate in Parliament.

"It is worrying that the disease has continued to kill lives of many Kenyans. I call upon the President to declare it a national disaster so that more efforts can be made to prevent it," she said.

She noted that once it is debated, passed and assented to by the President, it will see Sh14 billion set aside by the National Treasury and allocated to help fight the disease in all counties.

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Waruguru noted that there were only 23 oncologists and three hospitals in the country that deal with cancer disease.

“In less than a year, the disease has claimed four prominent people in the country that include former Baringo MP Grace Kipchoim, former Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore, former Kibra MP Ken Okoth and now Laboso. Until when shall we do something even for the common mwananchi in the rural areas who is suffering out of cancer,” posed the legislator

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Waruguru at the same said there was need to relook on the companies that supply cancer drugs in the country as there were cartels.

She said it is the high time that more people and companies were allowed to compete fairly with these companies to allow generic drugs to be sold so that the cost can come a little bit down.

Waruguru rooted for removal of taxes on drugs for cancer and related drugs from the hospitals and chemists.

The MP expressed the need to have more health workers, deploy more doctors for training and equip public hospitals in order to fight the menace.

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CancerJoyce LabosoCatherine WaruguruCancer Bill 2019