Kenya: Bomet Governor Warns Cancer Deaths on the Rise


The governor of Kenya’s Bomet County has warned that a rise in deaths related to cancer and high blood pressure are putting added strain on the country.

Governor Isaac Ruto said on Monday that two out of every three deaths in the county are attributed to the diseases. He also announced plans by his administration to establish a cancer treatment centre to help deal with the growing number of cases in the country.


Personal experience

The numbers Governor Ruto speaks of suggest nobody is immune from the diseases – whether suffering first-hand or seeing loved ones endure the illnesses. Ruto himself is among the people whose lives have been touched by the diseases.

“Personally, I lost my daughter to blood cancer. This is a wake-up call that we must be ready to confront these emerging challenges with the urgency they deserve,” he said on Monday.

Mr Ruto also cited the disease as a major contributor to the rising number of orphans in Kenya, which contributes to a number of other problems in the country.

The governor was speaking to a group of fundraisers on a 1,000 km walk to raise money for cervical cancer patients in Migori County. The team was passing through Bomet County before marching on to Narok, Nairobi and finishing their walk in Mombasa.


County seeking funds for cancer centre

Mr Ruto also revealed the county government is seeking Sh6 billion of funds to help set up a cancer treatment centre. he revealed the initial projection set out of Sh30 million is far below what will be needed to finish the project.
“At first I thought the facility requires Sh30 million, but after engaging in some brainstorming sessions and consulting experts, we found that we need at least Sh6 billion for the project,” he said.

The government with Moi University, Aga Khan Hospital, the Texas Cancer Centre and other partners to develop the care centre. The governor says the majority of funds will be sourced locally.


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