With little warning, the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), is changing everything about our normal schedules both socially and professionally as we fight to remain alive.
Well, for nominated Nairobi MCA Anne Thumbi, COVID-19 had to take her back to what she loved most before joining the political arena, saving lives.
As the County Assembly suspended its sittings last month for 30 days over fears of the contagious disease spreading, Ms Thumbi, a trained nurse, saw an opportunity to use her medical skills instead of sitting home like everyone else waiting for the dust to settle.
The mother of one, who was the late Kibra Member of Parliament Ken Okoth’s lover, is now volunteering at Waithaka Health Centre In Dagoretti South as a Nurse.
In an interview with this writer, Ms Thumbi said she just didn’t wake up and decide to visit the health centre. She had to get approval from the Ministry of Health after submitting her application alongside her practising licence.
At Waithaka Health Centre, she spends part of her seven hours at the facility attending to patients in the maternity ward. She also carries training in family planning and COVID-19.
Deconstructing myths on COVID-19, she says, is part of her daily job at the facility as some of the youth she interacts with belive the disease only affects the elderly.
The 32-year-old once worked at the Aga Khan Hospital before her nomination to the county assembly after the 2017 General Election.
With the assembly expected to resume sessions late this month, that means more time for her to care for the sick at hospital.
The House was expected to resume its sitting this week on April 16 but didn’t. Speaker Beatrice Elachi said the earliest the assembly can resume normal sittings will be after the lapse of the 21-day cessation of movement in the Nairobi Metropolitan area, that is from April 27.
The MCA, however, noted that some committees have been holding sittings strategizing on how best to help residents amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ms Thumbi, who sits in the Public Health Services committee, said she has been giving her views on matters COVID-19, even as she attends to patients at Waithaka Health Centre.
Ms Thumbi came to limelight last year after Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko Sonko protested a move by the late MP’s family to exclude the MCA’s son from Okoth’s funeral arrangements.
During one of Okoth’s funeral services in Nairobi last year, the Governor strongly stated that the child was the late Kibra MP’s son saying the two met when Ms Thumbi worked at Sonko Rescue Team.
“Ken had a son with one of the nominated Nairobi MCAs by the name Ann Thumbi alias Anita. The two love birds did not hide the fact that they shared a son. Ken recognised and was there for his son as demonstrated by pictures and various documented correspondences,” said Sonko.
It’s at this point that Sonko opened up on how Ms Thumbi got nominated into the assembly, “In 2017 Ken told me to nominate his second wife Ann Thumbi to the Nairobi County Assembly. And since I have much respect for Ken Okoth who is lying before us here today, I nominated Ann Thumbi.”
Ms Thumbi later sued Okoth’s family including his wife Monica and mother Angelina for denying the boy identified as Jayden a right to pay his last respects to his father.
She claimed that Okoth was the father of her son. A DNA test later confirmed paternity.
Ms Thumbi was also one of the Jubilee members, who campaigned for footballer McDonald Mariga, in the race to succeed Okoth.
On why she did not support Okoth’s brother Imran, who later won the seat by a landslide, she cited loyalty to Jubilee party.