A nurse who is grieving her mother has warned Kenyans saying the Covid-19 virus should not be taken lightly.
Lillyan Mutinda, head of health promotion at Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS), lost her mother, Alice Mbenya Kivuvani-Mutua to the killer virus.
Alice was taken ill shortly after attending the burial of her sister, Ruth Kalau, on February 27. Ruth had been ailing for at least 10 years.
During her mother’s burial held at their Oasis Farm in Koko village, Kithimani in Yatta, Lillyan castigated those who still think that the virus is not real.
“You guys you are joking. You are saying there is no Covid?” she posed on Monday.
Lillyan, a registered nurse, sobbed as she approached the microphone to address mourners, some of whom she noticed were not adhering to the ministry of health containment measures.
“As we came from Nairobi, I saw people not wearing masks, not observing social distancing. Right here, I can see people not putting on masks or covering their noses and mouths. It pains me,” she said.
She added, “I asked God a question; Since March last year, I’d worked hard as a health promotion expert, not just in Nairobi but in the entire nation educating people about Covid-19. And Covid-19 snatched away my mother.”
Her mother had breathed her last in her arms on Saturday morning in Nairobi. Her younger sister, Naomi, looked on.
Naomi and their other sister, Emily, could not attend their mother’s burial because they had been exposed to the virus and were in isolation in Nairobi.
“It’s heartbreaking that Emily and I can’t be present. Mom, go boldly as you did every day in life,” Naomi wrote as the service that was being streamed live continued.
Lillyan’s other sister, Suzzy was inconsolable as she mourned her mother whom she planned on surprising with a baby bump.
“For how long, for how long my dear brothers and sisters? It is only us who can change the story…. We had HIV, it’s no longer a threat. Why do we allow this, it pains my heart… kindly take care of yourself, take care of those you love, take care of strangers, and tell somebody, kindly, to wear a mask… wash their hands,” Lillyan implored.
The family, she said, is not worried about the stigma that comes with a Covid-19 related death.
“It’s good, because they will not be able to infect us in case they are infected. And that’s why I said all protocols for Covid-19 will be followed at my mother’s funeral,” she said.
The virus has killed 1,925 people locally as the new aggressive and unforgiving strain sweeps across the globe.