Residents of Busia County are living in fear after a middle aged man collapsed and died under unclear circumstances last night in Busia Town.
Speaking to the press in his office on Thursday, Busia County Commissioner Joseph Kanyiri said that the incident was reported at around 10.00 pm by a member of the public.
“When the incident occurred, our security officers were informed by good Samaritans and they immediately rushed to the scene,” he said adding that the officers later called Public Health officers.
Kanyiri added that the body of the deceased has been moved to a morgue within the County.
“As at now we have not established whether the deceased was one of the local residents or a long distance truck driver,” he said adding that investigations are ongoing.
He further said that the relevant authorities have not ascertained the cause of the death but according to eye witnesses, the deceased suffered difficulty in breathing.
“We want to urge all the residents to wear their face masks at all times while in public places,” he said, adding that it is the cheapest way of being protected from contracting the coronavirus.
The CC urged the local residents to abstain from speculation but instead wait for the post mortem results to establish the cause of the incident.
“But without cheating ourselves, there is community transmission in our County,” he said while warning that locals should not think that the disease only affects truck drivers but instead visit the designated areas for community testing to know their status.
Kanyiri however expressed concern that a number of the local residents still disregard the Ministry of Health protocols on combating the virus adding that the regulations are not meant to please government officers but to protect the locals.
He appealed to any family with a missing person to report to the police station with a view to helping in identifying the deceased person.
“In the event that we are not able to identify the deceased we will seek a court order so that he can be buried under the guidelines of unclaimed bodies,” he said.
John Odhiambo, an eye witness however blamed the County government for laxity in responding to reports saying that the body of the deceased was moved from the scene at around 3.00 am.
“As local residents we give reports to the relevant authorities but they drag their feet,” he said adding that the deceased was a truck driver who had alighted from one of the trucks to relax outside.
Odhiambo urged the Department of Health to establish the cause of the incident and inform the public.
Wycliffe Aura who works at a nearby garage urged the government to issue local residents with quality face masks expressing fear that they risked contracting the virus.
By Salome Alwanda