By Nepjournal Correspondent,
Habaswein referral hospital serving Wajir South sub-county of Wajir County is reported to have been without power for two weeks after it failed to clear sh115,000 electricity bill that was said to be an accumulation charges of 3 months. According to residents who spoke to NepJournal, KPLC disconnected all the power to the hospital as electricity charges remained uncleared for the last 3 months. Patients had to be turned away from the hospital and asked to seek health services from private clinics. Some private clinics we spoke to reported overwhelming traffic of patients seeking health services.
Residents of Habaswein complained that County government authorities have abandoned them as most could not access private health care. They lamented that thousands worth of medicines will spoil as a result of the disconnected power and will take the county government a long time before the essential drugs can be replenished. Just before we went to press we were informed that shilling 35,000 was paid to KPLC but the company decided not to re-connect power.
A spot check reveals that pregnant mothers are giving birth assisted by the use of torches, staff have not been paid and there is no inpatient food available.
An aid worker who contacted Nepjournal reported ”delivering millions worth of medicines” only to find there was no power in the hospital. He is concerned the medications the organization delivered may go to waste.
Habaswein Town has suffered numerous blackouts previously after the only generator serving the district malfunctioned.
According to a Mr Ahmed who called Nepjournal from Habaswein, the county government authorities are indirectly punishing residents of Habaswein for what he said was a decision by majority of the residents to decline the governor’s directive to supply water to Wajir Town. They claim the governor has visited the sub-county ”only once since he was elected and that was to ask for the supply of the water to begin”. This they claim was refused because that will drain their only source of water. They said the county government preferred to bulldoze the project implementation without any consultations. According to studies on the impact of the Habaswein-Wajir water supply project, the likelihood of the Merti aquifer turning saline in a short period is significantly high. The residents claimed this was their primary concern.