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Raila to sue city hospitals that turned away ambulance patient

Cord leader Raila Odinga has instructed his lawyers to sue the hospitals that refused to offer treatment to accident victim Alex Madaga who died last week after waiting in an ambulance for 18 hours.

The former Prime Minister said the rights of Mr Madaga were violated, adding that the constitution was clearly defiled and ignored, “as if it counts for nothing”.

“I have therefore asked a team of lawyers led by Mr Anthony Oluoch and Mr Edwin Sifuna to get in touch with Mr Madaga’s family with a view to instituting legal proceedings against the hospitals, individuals and all the other institutions whose actions or inaction led to this unnecessary loss of life,” said Mr Odinga in a statement from South Korea.


“We have a duty to make all public officers, institutions and individuals understand that the words of our Constitution were not written in vain. It is for cases like that of Mr Madaga that the words ‘a person shall not be denied emergency medical treatment’ were written. We must make that clear to all starting with this case.”

Mr Madaga was denied emergency medical attention by a number of private hospitals and had to spend 18 hours in an ambulance before being admitted to Kenyatta National Hospital.

He died on last Friday afternoon.

Mr Alex Madaga, 37, spent 18 hours in an ambulance at the Kenyatta National Hospital on October 5, 2015. PHOTO | COURTESY
Mr Alex Madaga, 37, spent 18 hours in an ambulance at the Kenyatta National Hospital on October 5, 2015. PHOTO | COURTESY


According to Mr Odinga, the constitution, under Economic and Social Rights, guarantees every person the right to “the highest attainable standard of health, which includes the right to health care services, including reproductive health care”.

“The Constitution categorically states that ‘A person shall not be denied emergency medical treatment’,” he said.


The former Premier said the words were included in the constitution after careful analysis of the frustrations the people of Kenya were going through in their daily pursuit of health services.

“Against this background, I have taken time and mulled over the tribulations of Mr Alex Madaga and his family following a road accident last week,” he said.

“Despite the express provisions of the Constitution, I join the family and relatives, in particular his widow Jessica Moraa in mourning Mr Madaga. Mr Madaga’s death was preventable had he received timely and quality emergency medical care from this hospital. I wish to thank the Nation Media Group for highlighting Mr Madaga’s tribulations with the depth that it deserved.”