By Reuben Olita
Busia leaders and scholars have raised concerns over the rise in people who succumb to sicklecell in the county.
Led by Busia Governor, H.E Dr Paul Otuoma, the leaders called for concerted efforts to reverse the trend. They were speaking during the burial mass of Master Casey Oucha Otuoma, the son to Director of Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry Busia Chapter, Kizito Otuoma and cousin to H.E Otuoma.
The Governor recalled with nostalgia a similar incident that happened to Proffesor Fred Were whose son succumbed to sicklecell at the age of 20 years, a situation he said that needs quick intervention.
Prof Were in his eulogy recalled that Kizito’s sister was diagnosed with sickle cell in 2003 but they managed to contain it.
Busia County Assembly Speaker, Fredrick Odilo said sickle cell has increased in the county, noting that they buried a similar case to confirm the gravity of the matter.
Nominated Member of the County Assembly, Irene Eduwa urged County residents to take advantage of the occasion to mark the World’s Sicklecell Day on 19th June, 2023 to enlighten them on the dangers inherent with the cancerous disease.
Master Casey, 23, was given a befitting send-off during burial mass held at Bunandi Primary School grounds. He was until his death on 14th May, 2023 a student at Mt Kenya University pursuing a degree in hotel management.
H.E Otuoma said there are temptations in life, thus the need by Kizito family to take heart and let it be well with their son.
“Master Casey’s courage saw him lead a delagation to my residence with demands which they wanted solved and I had no option but to fulfil them,” the Governor recalled with nostalgia.
He added: ” Master Casey was a good cook like me and members of the Pandemic Group. The deceased has lived his life with passion. His felt pain in his last days but remained courageous enough.”
Former cabinet minister, Fred Gumo said Casey’s death was God’s plan, urging mourners to hold their hearts and pray to overcome inherent challenges bedeviling the family.
One of Casey’s most enduring qualities was his unwavering capacity to love and care for others. He had an emphatic heart that knew no bounds, and his compassionate nature touched the
lives of countless people.
“As we reflect Casey’s life, we are reminded of his adventurous spirit. He was a true explorer, constantly seeking new experiences and embracing every opportunity that came his way.”
Those in attendance included First Lady, Celine Otuoma,acting county secretary, Elijah Mwaro, CECs, Topista Wanyama (Finance), Andrew Nakitari (Public Service Administtation and Gender), Beatrice Nakholi (Health and Sanitation), Olakachuna Omuse (Trade),
Others are Olunga Paul Ekwenye (Culture and Sports), Peter Odima (Lands), County Public Service Board vice chairman, Dr Dominic Ayaa, Board CEO, Truphena Akide, Funyula MP, Dr Oundo Mudenyo and former MPs, Sammy Wea and Omingo Magara, KNCCI Busia chapter chairman, Silvanus Abungu and Pandemic chairman, Benson Oduor among others.