Boy, 10, hit by stray bullet loses eyesight

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2020 00:00 |
Destiny Mumo recuperates at KNH after he was hit by a stray bullet on January 17 in Kamukunji, Nairobi. He is with his mother, Dorine Naliaka. Photo/PD/TIMOTHY NJENGA

A 10-year-old boy who was shot in the head by police during a riot at Kamukunji in  Nairobi last week has gone partially blind.

Destiny Mumo,  a Class Four pupil, was shot on Friday last week while playing at the NECI Educational Centre grounds.

Mumo is undergoing treatment at the Kenyatta National Hospital but his father, Jacob Kathumbi, is worried that his condition is not improving.

He is awaiting a surgical operation to remove the bullet in his head. “He has undergone nine CT scans for the last three days and his left eye has gone blind,” he said.

Kathumbi, a pastor, said his son was playing with his school mates outside their classrooms when he was hit by a stray bullet believed to have been fired during running battles between residents of Majengo and the police about two kilometres away. 

Residents had accused a police officer of shooting an unarmed man leading to a violent confrontation between the police and residents. Police were accused of firing live bullets on protestors.

At the NECI Educational Centre, however, teachers and pupils carried on with the day’s activities until Mumo, who was playing in the field, suddenly fell down.

Mumo’s teacher, Lameck Omariba, said he was bleeding from his ears. “We saw him falling down. He tried to stand up but could not walk far and fell down again,” he said.

Initially, teachers thought he had been hit by a stone but doctors at the KNH, where he had been rushed, revealed that a bullet was lodged in his head.

Omariba says Mumo has a lot of interest in fine art and can draw objects to perfection.

His father said that while the hospital bill continues to rise, what matters to him most is that his son fully recovers.

He also asked the Independent Police Oversight Authority (Ipoa) to investigate the incident and expressed fears the police could try to cover up the matter and deny his son justice.

“Though I have reported the matter at the Pangani Police Station, there is no information yet on who shot my son,” said Kathumbi.

Pangani OCPD Alice Kimei told People Daily that she was out of office and would issue a report over the incident later.

“I am not aware of the incident but I’ll get back to you once I get the full brief,” she said.

Kathumbi also pleaded with Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai to take action against the officer who shot his son.

Last week, police were accused of killing 17-year-old Stephen Machurusi during protests over the poor state of Kasarani-Mwiki road.

Machurusi sat for his Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) exams last year.

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