A 63-year-old woman has been arrested in Kisumu after she was found in possession of 950 treated mosquito nets meant for free distribution to contain the spread of malaria.
The nets donated to the government by Global Fund for Malaria are part of a consignment that disappeared at Rabuor and Nyangande hospitals in Nyando Sub-County last week.
Kisumu County Police Commander Samuel Anampiu said officers from Obunga Police Post acting on a tip off, raided the suspect’s house at USAID estate where they found 19 bales of the nets.
Each bale, he said, contained 50 pieces with each piece retailing at Sh400 bringing the total value of the stolen nets recovered to Sh380, 000.
The suspect, Mary Awino, who is the owner of the house where the nets were recovered is being held for questioning and will be charged in court on Monday.
Anampiu said the arrest was a great milestone in helping recover the 17,000 nets stolen from the two hospitals last week.
Among the suspects arrested after the theft included Theresa Anyango Otieno, who is the acting officer in charge at Rabuor Sub-County Hospital, Cynthia Akinyi, the acting officer in charge of the net distribution programme at Nyang’ande area and David Ouma, the officer in charge at Nyang’ande Hospital.
According to the County Malaria Control Coordinator Lilyana Dayo, Kisumu received 793, 740 insecticide treated mosquito nets from the national government for free distribution to households to control malaria.
The program, she said, targeted 316,373 households as the county celebrates reduction in prevalence of the killer disease from 27 per cent in 2015 to 19 per cent in 2021.
By Chris Mahandara