Nairobi County to dispose 236 bodies from public morgues

Nairobi County will dispose of some 236 unclaimed bodies. [Jenipher Wachie, Standard]

Nairobi County will dispose of some 236 unclaimed bodies from city public morgues within one week if they are not collected.

The County Secretary and head of county Public Service Jairus Musumba said members of the public have seven days to identify them.

The corpses presently lie at the City mortuary and Mama Luck Kibaki hospital mortuary.

"The following 218 unclaimed bodies are lying at the Nairobi City Mortuary and 18 at the Mama Lucy Hospital Mortuary from the date of admission awaiting collection," reads the statement by Musumba.

However, the County said an order will be first sought so as to allow them to dispose of the corpses if no one will claim them, pursuant to the Public Health Act Cap 242 [Subsidiary; public health (public mortuaries) rules, 1991].

“Members of the public are asked to identify and collect the below-named bodies within seven days, failure to which the Nairobi City County will seek authority for disposal," read the statement.

The bodies were received in the morgues in between March 2021 and March 2022, having been picked from different locations by the police officers on patrol.

Last year Nairobi Metropolitan Services disposed of 119 bodies after the families failed to collect them. At the time 105 unclaimed bodies were in City Mortuary.

On March 4, 2022, Nairobi Metropolitan Service (NMS) issued a public notice on the planned disposal of unclaimed corpses that have been abandoned in city mortuaries between November 2020 and September 2021.

At that time, this was a last call to the interested people to identify and collect 139 bodies lying at the City mortuary and 52 others abandoned at Mama Lucy Hospital mortuary.

Most of the corpses were marked as unknown and were recovered by police without any form of identification documentation.

Then Nairobi County Director of Health Services Dr Ouma Oluga said the disposal of unclaimed bodies is a legal requirement and that the identification of unknown bodies is the work of the police.

According to the new list by released Musumba, some of the unclaimed bodies had identities by the time of collection while others did not have thus remain unknown.

The statement released also revealed that the causes of death for the deceased are road accidents, murder, drowning, shooting, natural death, sudden death and mob injustice.

Few cases have been indicated to be that of natural death.