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ELECTION 2022

Meet Boyz, the abandoned teen, now a man, who has called Kiambu Hospital home for 13 years

NATIONAL
By Fidelis Kabunyi | Dec 15th 2021 | 3 min read

Boyz, 19, was abandoned in Zimmerman in 2008. [Fidelis Kabunyi, Standard]

On the morning of April 2008, police on patrol from Zimmerman Police Post found an abandoned six-year-old kid in the cold streets of the estate and took the unidentified boy to Kiambu Level V Hospital where they registered him as an unknown African boy.

Boy, they named him.

When The Standard visited the hospital recently, ‘Boyz’, as he was lovingly christened when he could no longer be referred to as Boy, and in allusion to the American RnB group Boyz II Men, was full of life.

He lay on his number 10 bed at the facility which he has called home for the last 13 years.

According to Kiambu Level V Hospital Superintendent Cyrus Mumbura, Boyz was offered residency thanks to the then-hospital superintendent, Director of Medical Services Patrick Amoth, who ordered his admission after a team of doctors established he was unaccompanied and suffering from cerebral palsy.

“He was examined, treated and admitted since no one came for him,” Mumbura told The Standard.

“I am the fifth medical superintendent since Boyz was admitted in 2008. When you take over, you are briefed about his condition. He has remained part of the hospital family.”

His file at the hospital. [Fidelis Kabunyi, Standard]

Mumbura said the hospital offers Boyz round the clock care and ensures that he has a medical officer attending to him, including during doctors’ or nurses’ strikes.

“It takes dedicated nurses to take care of such a case; no incentives are given to them other than salary. It is pure dedication and love. It is unfortunate that his kin took off, and it still remains unclear how many days he had been in the streets before the police found him,” says Mumbura.

The superintendent noted that an attempt to adopt the 19-year-old fell through after a prospective children’s home pulled out.

“A children’s home once tried to adopt him, but, after reviewing his age and special needs, they turned down the offer. All he needs is a home, with a family setup. His parents must be somewhere and we kindly request that they come forward. It is unfair that he is confined to a hospital,” pleads Mumbura.

Records indicate 'Boyz' is suffering from temporal lobe epilepsy. [Fidelis Kabunyi, Standard]

According to Jane Ndirangu, the nurse in charge of the hospital’s Nyayo Ward, where Boyz calls home, earlier records indicate he suffered from temporal lobe epilepsy and exhibited psychotic symptoms.

Ndirangu noted that had he received necessary care and early treatment, he would have probably walked and developed speech.

“He can’t walk. He fractured his legs sometime back during an epileptic episode and, by the time he was admitted and doctors discovered the extent of the injuries, his muscles had become stiff. Since he is epileptic, we treat him as a patient, and that is why we have opened a file for him. It is a legal document.”

Irene Gathoni, another nurse, who The Standard caught up with wheeling Boyz in the expansive hospital corridors to sunbathe, said Paul Waweru, a well-wisher from the nearby SDA church, has been shaving his hair and beard for free.

“He is very proud of himself and is very independent when it comes to short calls, but he only calls for assistance for long calls,” said Gathoni.

'Boyz' at Kiambu Level V Hospital. [Fidelis Kabunyi, Standard]

Gathoni lamented that it was unfortunate that parents abandon such children and called for awareness about foetal development issues, epilepsy and congenital hydrocephalus against retrogressive cultural beliefs.

Efforts have been made to reach out to his relatives, but there have, however, been no information forthcoming on his case.  

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