For the first time in 32 years a mother of 19 at Chasimba in Kilifi County is celebrating Christmas with joy after receiving gifts from a Kilifi well-wisher, Benjamin Kai.
The 51-year-old Mbodze Munga shed her tears of joy as she narrated to the media how difficult life has been raising 19 children with her jobless husband saying they have been surviving on Cassava since she had her first child in 1986.
“Since I started having children from the first one in 1986 to the nineteenth one, our lives have really been difficult. All my Christmas holidays, I go looking for vegetables and cassava to feed my 19 children. Today am so happy we will be eating food of our choice, thank you so much,” Mbodze said while crying.
The woman said efforts to look for suitable birth control method bore no fruit due to her high blood pressure condition she was cautioned about in hospitals.
“I went to the hospital for family planning but I was told I could not get any because my blood pressure was high,” Mbodze said.
Her husband, Renson Munga Charo, aged 53 and father to the children could not hide his relief while narrating to the media at his Chasimba home how he has gone through hard times providing basic needs for his family.
“I am so happy on this Christmas day because we are going to celebrate like other people. I have suffered a lot for 32 years now doing odd jobs to put food on the table for my wife and the 19 children,” Munga said.
The two parents pleaded with the government and well-wishers to help them treat their ailing 3-year-old child,Nickson Munga who has been battling a severe eye disease and was referred to Kenyatta Hospital for specialised medical attention.
“As for this baby, we have been referred to Kenyatta hospital for medication but we do not have any money. We are asking the government and any well-wishers to help us treat him and also help educate our children who can’t continue with their education due to lack of school fees,” Mbodze said.
Speaking to the media, Mr Kai who is Kilifi County Government Finance and Economic Planning Chief Officer said, he preferred celebrating his Christmas holiday with the family. He termed Mbodze as a heroine for raising 19 children while surviving from hand to mouth.
The Good Samaritan also promised to pay school fees for one of the children who completed her Form-Four education at St Thomas Girls High school in Kilifi but has not been able to proceed to tertiary level due to lack of school fees.
“I am glad to have come here to celebrate Christmas with this family. I will ensure that Priscillar Munga proceeds to college next year,” Kai said.
So far, Mbodze has been blessed with 24 grandchildren who also reside in her Chasimba home.
By Treeza Auma