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Police officer who collapsed while guarding Equity Bank succumbed to heart attack, not COVID-19 – Family

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The family of the police officer who collapsed and died on the spot has revealed the deceased succumbed to a heart attack and not COVID-19 as earlier speculated.

Corporal Harrison Nkuja Gideon breathed his last after collapsing in a toilet at Equity Bank Makutano branch on Tuesday, July 21.

 

Police officer who collapsed while guarding Equity Bank succumbed to heart attack, not COVID-19 - FamilyPolice officer collapsed and died while guarding Equity Bank Makutano branch in Meru town. Photo: Daily Nation.
Source: UGC

The officer was laid to rest on Monday, August 3, in his home in Athiru-Gaiti in Igembe South, Meru county.

As earlier reported by TUKO.co.ke, the officer was said to be unwell in the fateful morning and had vomited before passing on.

The bank hall was cordoned off by the county COVID-19 surveillance team who picked the body after two hours due to precautions related to the spread of the virus.

 

Police officer who collapsed while guarding Equity Bank succumbed to heart attack, not COVID-19 - FamilyThe police officer was laid to rest on Monday, August 3. Photo: Officers Operations.
Source: UGC

Meru Public health director John Inanga said they were called in to collect the body as a precautionary measure since the officer’s death could not be explained.

Cases of people collapsing and dying on the spot have been on the rise, with their cause of deaths remaining a mystery.

A little over a week ago, a man in Mwihoko Estate, Githurai collapsed and died on the spot outside a cereal shop.

The deceased is said to have struggled for a moment before breathing his last leaving the residents stunned.

Similarly, on Friday, July 17, a woman who was washing clothes at Mlolongo in Machakos county also collapsed and died on the spot.

On Monday, July 20, a middle-aged man fell down and died after alighting from a matatu.

The yet to be identified man had travelled from Buruburu to Dandora before he passed away.

By Tuko.co.ke

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Africa

Help me find my Kenyan family

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Alexander Bedran, 25, has lived most of his life in Lebanon but he often sees himself as Kenyan as well.

Based on narratives from his Lebanese father and his late mother, Alexander has come to learn of his Kenyan roots. He knows he has Kenyan grandparents, has a Kenyan birth certificate and even spent the first two years of his life here.

The urge to look for his relatives in Kenya has seen him visit the Kenyan Consulate in Beirut and write letters to the Kenyan Embassy in Kuwait (which is accredited Lebanon). None of them were helpful but they advised him to travel to Kenya and apply for his Kenyan citizenship documents.

Last week, he spoke to the Nation, hoping that one day, his grandparents, uncles or aunts will read it and bring him home. Here is his story:

“My name is Alexander Badran. I am Kenyan or Lebanese, actually both. I am 25 years old. I was born in Kenya on March 11, 1995 at the Mombasa Hospital. I have decided to come to you through the Nation because I am trying to find my mother’s relatives, siblings or any of her relatives. I have tried on my own the past couple of years through social media, browsing through names that relate to my mother’s and those I heard my father mention. I have not been lucky.

I don’t know why I want to contact them. I don’t  have a reason, which may sound awkward, really, but I guess I just want to connect with my family as I have never had a sense of family. I never had one from my parents. I never knew relatives from my mother’s side and those from my father’s side as they never stayed in touch. My father had continual family feuds with my grandfather. My entire family tree has always been a mystery to me.

My mother’s name was Jacinta Mueni Kitinga. She was born sometime between 1972 and 1974. She was initially protestant though I don’t know the exact denomination. She had a brother named Alfred who was either a priest or a cleric in a church. Her mother, my grandmother, was called Rachel. Her father was David or Daniel; I am not sure. My mother was living in Mombasa when she met my father. They later relocated to Lebanon.

My mother was of Kikuyu and Kamba descent. I can’t remember exact details but my mother mentioned that my grandfather might have had a house or lived near Lake Victoria.

My father’s name is Ahmad Yousef Badran. He is Lebanese. He was born in November 1952 or 1953. My relationship with my father wasn’t perfect. I viewed him as a strange man because he often lied to people.

A combination of photos of Jacinta Mueni Kitinga, her son Alexander Bedran and his father Ahmad Yousef Badran.

I cannot confirm if whatever he told me about my mother was accurate.  According to him, he met my mother while on leave. He had been working as the captain of a ship for the ICRC. He says he met my mother while on a safari. I am not sure where that was.

I remember my father mentioning that he married my mother only so she could take care of his two other children from a previous marriage after the wife died. Those children were eventually abandoned as they lived in Manilla in the Philippines.

About a year prior to marrying my father, my mother converted to Islam and changed her first name to Iman. However, I am not sure if she legally changed it.

I remember my mother mentioning that she had worked in tea plantations in Kenya when she was younger.

My parents mentioned quite often a man named Paul Kelly, who may or may not have been the boss or contractor where my father worked at the time.

After I was born, we lived for about a year in Mombasa. But I remember Nairobi was mentioned often even though I don’t know if we ever lived there or if my father’s work place was based there.

My parents then moved to Cyprus for about a year. A year later, when my grandfather (father’s side) was about to die, they relocated to Lebanon as my father and his siblings were seeking their inheritance.

While in Lebanon, my mother was never allowed to communicate with her family back in Kenya. She was not allowed to learn Arabic or go out to meet anyone or see anything.

My mother, however, secretly made friends with a union of international women in Lebanon who were her only friends and source of companionship. My father still forbade her from ever seeing or talking to them.

As the years went by, she became more miserable and lost all hope. Fast forward to 2005 and my parents fought physically almost daily, sometimes every 15 minutes. My memory of this time is of running to the neighbours to ask for help to separate them. Each day my father  returned home, he unleashed his rage from work on her and beat her senseless.

My father claimed my mother was insane when people asked about her.

In August 2007, or perhaps 2008, she committed suicide through electrocution. The neighbours saw her intentionally hold onto an electric wire until she died. That same day my father had threatened to send my mother to a mental asylum, saying she would be locked up. Weeks before her death, she asked for a divorce but my father laughed it off and beat her whenever she mentioned it.

When the police arrived to investigate her death, he portrayed himself as the victim and described himself as a loving father and husband.

My father took me out of school multiple times until Grade Seven when he stopped my education for unknown reasons.

Years later in 2016, I ran away from home. I packed everything I had and never looked back. However, my mother’s legal papers from Kenya are all missing. I did menial jobs and saved enough to study digital marketing in a vocational school. I got my degree recently.

In my attempt to reconcile and forgive my father, I met him in July 2020 for the first time since leaving home.

I put grudges and hatred aside and asked for my mother’s Kenyan ID, marriage certificate or any legal document of hers. He claimed to have lost them all or to have forgotten to collect them from a local Mukhtar (title for a village chief in Lebanon).

He also claimed they were left in the morgue where my mother’s body was kept. Both the Muktar and the morgue deny retaining any papers.

My father still stays with my younger sister. He often locks her up, which causes me to worry about her mental health.

I believe I have been denied my right to acquire my Kenyan nationality because of the chaos in my immediate family. I once reached out to the Kenyan Consulate in Lebanon and was advised to be physically present in Kenya while applying.

I have been so desperate in the past. I had never met a Kenyan so when I met a Ugandan hairdresser, I asked if she knew my relatives.

I figured that since the two countries neighbour each other, he might know someone in Kenya who might connect me to my relatives.

The only Kenyan document I have is a birth certificate. My mother gave it to me years back and told me to guard it jealously. She said it could one day help me. I hope it does.

By Nation.co.ke

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Lifestyle

40, 000 Litres Capacity Water Tower Finally Up at Victory Gardens Kitengela

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A 40, 000 Litres Capacity Water Tower at Victory Gardens Phase 5 was finally hoisted by Optiven engineers earlier today. This ultimate value addition at the leading gated community in Kitengela now assures all residents of Victory Gardens Phase 3, 4 and 5 of around-the-clock flowing water.

Water being a very important resource and a domestic need, this water tower will now be pressurizing Victory Gardens’ water for distribution throughout this estate’s homes ensuring that hydrostatic pressure, driven by gravity, forces the water down and through the entire system.

We appreciate the patience of our customers and request them to start building their dream homes at this homely estate.

Do you want to be part of this great Gated Community?

Call us now: 0790300300 or 0723400500
Website: www.optiven.co.ke

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Health

Kenyans in US grapple with Covid-19 woes

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His conspicuous Kenyan name, Kariuki, is what gave him out and attracted the attention of a handful of compatriots working at the Philadelphia international airport.

Recently, staff at the airport woke up to news that scores of homeless people had been rounded up by the airport police and the Philadelphia Parking Authority. Among them was Kariuki (first name withheld for privacy reasons), a Days later, the Nation located Mr Kariuki in a shelter for homeless people on Island Avenue in South Philadelphia.

Mr Kariuki, originally from Nakuru County in Kenya’s Rift Valley, came to the US as an undergrad student at Temple university in Philadelphia five years ago.

“My mom, a hawker in Nakuru, raised the initial $10,000 for my tuition and that could only last me a semester and a half. Fortunately, I got a part-time job at the library in college but I still had to work at a local grocery store in the evenings and play drums for my church on Sundays where I was paid $100 every Sunday. Things were okay until Covid-19,” said Mr Kariuki.

A combination of photos of counsellor and clinical consultant Abel Oriri, who is based in Cleveland, Ohio; Geoffrey Chepkwony, who died in August in Texas, US; and David Bulindah, a clinical counsellor based in Seattle, Washington.

When, towards the end of March, the state of Pennsylvania shut down everything including education institutions, hotels and shops — and restricted movement, his world came tumbling down.

“My roommate, in whose name our apartment was registered cancelled the lease and returned to Memphis, Tennessee to his family. For almost three months, I lived in my car. It was hard to find food. The nights were cold. I started developing regular panic attacks that left me feeling like I was going crazy!” he said.

So bad were the panic attacks that police found him at the busy intersection between Island Avenue and Lindberg shouting at motorists and trying to stop them.

“I cannot remember doing this,” he says, although he describes himself at the time as “stressed, depressed and contemplating suicide”.

Psychiatric help

One day, he woke up in some psychiatric facility in West Chester and was told he had been there for three weeks.

“I was totally confused, and heavily sedated. I had nowhere to go but at least I knew I had to leave that place,” he says

Mr Kariuki finally went to the airport because one of his classmates was working at an eatery that had remained open. His friend would occasionally give him a fresh meal and, at least at the airport, he’d enjoy heating during spring and cold air in summer. That was where the authorities found him and other homeless people who they took to shelters.

Mr Kariuki’s story is unfortunately now just one of the many familiar stories of Kenyans living abroad — made worse by the pandemic.

“It’s of course true to say that Covid-19 has led to a significant increase and demand for mental health intervention due to anxiety and depression. In fact, recent research indicates that more than 53 per cent of adults in the US have reported that their mental health had negatively been impacted directly,” said Kenyan-born counsellor and clinical consultant, Abel Oriri based in Cleveland, Ohio.

Recently, Kenyans in Houston, Texas, were shocked by the death of Geoffrey Chepkwony, who is thought to have committed suicide after his body was found on the streets. He was said to have been struggling with mental health problems. The Kenyan community in the US, led by those in Texas, has been raising the money needed to ship his remains home following a passionate appeal from his mother in Kenya.

Another high-profile case is that of the first Kenyan-born National Football League player, Daniel Adongo, who later fell from grace. His worrying state was depicted in a video clip widely shared online. His family later said they had sought help for him. Coronavirus seems to have exacerbated social and health issues like homelessness, depression and domestic violence, among others.

Support groups

Mr Oriri, who is also a pastor, says most of his clients now describe feelings of depression, anxiety, worry, stress, loneliness, poor appetite, suicidal thoughts and isolation.

“Many report difficulties sleeping, eating, increased alcohol consumption and substance use. Worsening chronic conditions from worry, depression, and stress over Covid-19.

The anger management and domestic violence groups that I have been providing for more than 20 years have surged one hundred percent in enrollment since the pandemic began,” he said in a recent interview.

David Bulindah, a Kenyan Pastoral and Clinical Counsellor based in Seattle, Washington, said the usually structured life of Kenyans in the US was recently disrupted without warning by the coronavirus.

“Most people could not leave their job and or could not go to their second job. For someone who had been enjoying consistent income to suddenly lose all that, stress, anxiety and depression thus kicks in”. he said.

Mr. Bulindah says that the Kenyan community will only deal with these issues if it opens up and discusses mental health and homelessness candidly without pre-judging those affected.

“People should know that it’s okay to lose a job and it’s okay to experience mental health problems. Those affected should not isolate themselves rather, reach out for help,” he said.

By nation.co.ke

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