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ELECTION 2022

Uasin Gishu ward reps push through removal of asbestos roofs

RIFT VALLEY
By Titus Too | Nov 10th 2021 | 2 min read

Asbestos-roofed house [Erastus Mulwa, Standard]

The Uasin Gishu County Assembly has passed a Motion seeking the replacement of asbestos roofing materials.

The assembly directed the Health department to ensure caution in the removal and disposal of the asbestos roofs, which have been linked to cancer, among other diseases.

“It is a constitutional right for every citizen to have a clean and healthy environment. According to World Health Organisation, 2014, asbestos are a leading cause of death. We still have buildings like schools and hospitals with asbestos roofs exposing residents to risks,” said nominated MCA Catherine Barmao while moving the Motion .

Dr Barmao said that it is expensive to carry out diagnosis, including X-rays, CT scans and biopsy, hence it would be ideal to remove asbestos as a preventive measure.

Leah Menjo (nominated), who seconded the Motion, said several schools in Eldoret town still have asbestos roofs despite the ban imposed by the national government in 2014.

Deputy Speaker Hosea Korir, who presided over the session, said Article 42 of the Constitution stipulates that every person has a right to a healthy environment.

“Health ministry developed occupational safety and Health Act in 2007, which prescribes various measures to be undertaken at place of work to mitigate the occurrence of occupational safety dangers that include safety and healthy audit, reporting the dangerous situation and prohibition of hazards,” he said

He stated that in March 2014, WHO cautioned that asbestos is one of the leading occupational health carcinogens, causing almost half of deaths caused by cancer.

He said most structures constructed during the colonial and early independence period have asbestos roofs, which currently require repair, hence posing health risks to users who inhale contaminated air.

Korir directed the administration to ensure safety in replacement of the hazardous materials, both in private and public buildings.

 

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