The number of cancer cases have been on the rise in Kenya with the country recording 47,887 new cases of all types of cancer every year and 32,987 deaths annually from all types of cancer combined.
This is according to the National Cancer Institute.
Interestingly, ten years ago then Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) Managing Director, the late Sammy Kioko Mangéli, warned Kenyans of a possible rising cancer cases within the next 10 to 15 years as a result of consumption of maize flour with high levels of aflatoxin.
In an unearthed video, he is heard saying:
“I’m more than 100 per cent sure it (aflatoxin) affects people and that within the next 10 to 15 years we will have serious cases of cancer based on this maize,” Mangéli said back then.
In 2010, then KEBS MD warned that Kenyans had consumed maize flour with high levels of aflatoxin. He said the effects would be evident in 10 or so years as many Kenyans would be battling cancer. 9 years on… pic.twitter.com/1WDfpa8va1
— Kenfrey Kiberenge (@KenKiberenge) August 4, 2019
Watch him speak in the tweet above.
Even more worrying then was Mangéli’s admission that they had been compelled to bend to political pressure and allow the consumption of contaminated maize.
According to a research conducted in Makueni and Nandi counties in 2017 by Food Quality and Safety, 79% and 83% of children under the age of five years tested positive to aflatoxin from consumption of maize in form of maize flour.
Aflatoxin poisoning causes acute and chronic health and production effects in human beings and animals respectively.
Elsewhere, a 40-year-old woman from Naivasha has committed suicide after she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
The woman, identified as Purity Muthoni, has been undergoing treatment in various hospitals after she developed a growth on one breast.
But it was only after visiting Kenyatta National Hospital that she was diagnosed with cancer.
After learning about her condition, the woman went back to her sister’s place with whom she lived in Naivasha.
The victim then waited for the sister to leave for work at a flower farm before hanging herself with a rope.
Naivasha OCPD Samuel Waweru, while confirming the incident, said the woman’s body was taken to Naivasha Mortuary.
“According to the sister, the deceased received results that she was suffering from breast cancer and she went into depression before committing suicide,” Waweru said.
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