Mwingi: Snakebite victims ask government to reinstate compensation

Victims attacked by snakes in parts of Mwingi, Kitui County have called upon the government to reinstate compensation.

The victims who spoke to a local radio station decried the huge amounts required for treatment.

“Three members of our family have been bitten by snakes on different occasions. Currently, one of them who is my sister is admitted to Mwingi Level 4 hospital. We are struggling to pay the bills which stand at KSh 17,500”, one victim explained.

Alfred Muola Mutava from Nguutani recalls the traumatizing night when he was attacked by the reptile, explaining how things have been hard for him.

“I was attacked by the snake at night while at work. I have been in the hospital receiving treatment for one and a half months now. We should be compensated because if one doesn’t receive treatment, they can even die”, he pleaded.

Cases of snakebites have recently increased majorly in parts of Ngomeni, Tseikuru, and Kyuso. Puff adders, black mambas, and cobras are the main types threatening the lives of the residents.

Snakebite compensation was removed in 2019 after Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) raised concern over the high rate of compensation claims. As of now, the government is compensating elephant, lion, cheetah, hippo, buffalo, leopard, crocodile, and wild dog attacks.

During her recent visit to Mwingi, Tourism, Wildlife, and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Peninah Malonza asked the Members of Parliament especially those from the affected areas to petition legislation seeking to restore the compensation.

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