Laboso: Uhuru pledges policy interventions to combat cancer

Saturday, August 3rd, 2019 00:00 |
Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu and her Kirinyaga counterpart Anne Waiguru carry the casket containing Laboso’s remains. Photo/GERALD ITHANA

Felix Yegon

The government has put in place elaborate plans to combat the cancer scourge, President Uhuru Kenyatta said on Friday. 

The Head of State, however, appealed to Kenyans to take the initiative to fight cancer by changing their lifestyles and eating habits to tame the killer diseases. He urged citizens to revert to traditional diets as opposed to processed foodstuff.

Speaking during the memorial service of the late Bomet Governor Dr. Joyce Cherono Laboso at the Bomet Green Stadium, the President regretted that cancer had become the agent of death in the country and vowed to enforce policy interventions to ease the burden of the disease on Kenyans.

The President steered clear of politics and instead eulogised Laboso, who succumbed to cancer last Sunday, as a great leader. 

He promised to increase the budget set aside for treatment of cancer so that patients can access better treatment locally.

"By September, my government will ensure there is a chemotherapy centre in Longisa Hospital, Bomet for cancer treatment," Uhuru said.

Others will be set up in Nyeri and Kisii counties, while existing cancer treatment centres will be equipped with more radiology machines.

The late governor will be laid to rest at her matrimonial home at Koru in Kisumu on Saturday. The body was flown to Bomet on Thursday evening after a memorial service at the All Saints Cathedral here in Nairobi.

Leaders who spoke heaped praises on the deceased, describing her as a hardworking, humble and generous person who treasured unity of all leaders and Kenyans. 

The government has put in place elaborate plans to combat the cancer scourge, President Uhuru Kenyatta said on Friday. 

He emphasised the need to find a way of having more women in leadership positions in the country. 

"We have tasted what women leadership can do in our country and therefore, going into the future there should never be a discussion about how to reduce women leaders," he said.

The DP assured Bomet residents that all the development projects started by Laboso would be completed. Opposition leader Raila Odinga opened up on his special relationship with Laboso, saying he referred her as his daughter, who looked up to him for political advice.

Laboso was first elected to Parliament on Raila's ODM party, but later ditched it and threw her weight behind Ruto’s United Republican Party.

Gender Affairs Chief Administrative Secretary Rachel Shebesh disclosed that she spent the last days by Laboso's bedside at Nairobi Hospital and revealed how the governor adored her husband Edwin Abonyo.

"Joyce told us that she was luckier than all of us combined and I can agree. You are those husbands who come from heaven…in case you didn’t know, all her conversations were about your love," she said.

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