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Nyamira County Deputy Governor Dr. James Gesami issuing mosquito nets to a resident during the launch of the distribution exercise in Nyamaiya Ward. Photo/Arnold Ageta

By Arnold Ageta

Nyamira Deputy Governor, Dr. James Gesami, launched a mosquito net distribution exercise today in Nyamaiya Ward to reduce the malaria prevalence rate in the county.

Nyamira is currently experiencing high cases of malaria in three sub-counties: Nyamira South, Nyamira North, and Manga. Records indicate that the prevalence rate for Nyamira stands at 7.5 percent, which is concerning.

The Deputy Governor acknowledged that malaria is a significant burden not only in Nyamira but also in Kenya and the rest of Africa, especially affecting pregnant women and children. Dr. Gesami stated, “Nyamira South is one of the most affected areas in Nyamira, along with Nyamira North and Manga. We aim to reduce the prevalence rate from 7.5 to 5 percent.”

He assured the public that the county government would continue to exert more effort in the fight against malaria and provide anti-malarial drugs in all health centers.

Dr. Gesami emphasized the importance of health promoters continuing to sensitize the public about malaria prevention, urging people to sleep under mosquito nets to reduce the malaria menace.

He said, “Even with tons of drugs, without prevention, it is nothing. This will cripple the economy of a country.”

Echoing the Deputy Governor’s message, Nyamira South DCC Florence Obunga warned against using nets for fencing, stating that action would be taken against those who misuse them.

She acknowledged the working relationship with the county government, emphasizing their joint efforts in sensitization, registration, and distribution.

For those who did not register, Obunga advised them to wait for the second round of registration to receive their nets.

Acting CEC for Health Services, Benard Maina, confirmed the significant funds used for net purchases and urged people to use them for their intended purpose.

Nyamira South, Nyamira North, and Manga were highlighted as high-risk areas for malaria in the county.

Dr. Kibor Keitany from the National Malaria Control Programme confirmed that 22 counties, including Nyamira, bear a substantial malaria burden.

He credited the support of the Global Fund for making net distribution possible and mentioned that the process has been fully digitized to streamline the distribution.

Dr. Keitany announced that the National Malaria Control Program would return to the county after six months to evaluate net usage.

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Nyamira County Medical Director, Dr. Geoffrey Nyambuti, emphasized the multifaceted approach to malaria prevention, including eliminating stagnant water and clearing bushes around homes.

Dr. Nyambuti also highlighted that neighboring Homabay County is implementing an indoor residual spraying program, and he urged the national government to run a similar campaign in Nyamira to reduce the malaria risk.

“Esianyi and some parts of Nyamaiya, which border Homabay County, have a very high malaria risk. In every 10 people, 3 – 5 people are affected by malaria,” he told the media. “We, therefore, ask the national government to run a similar campaign in Nyamira to help reduce the risk.”

Chief Officer of Primary Health Care, Moenga Momanyi, stressed the importance of prevention over cure in the fight against malaria, particularly for pregnant women and children.

A total of 449 thousand nets will be distributed to 169 thousand households that registered.

Moenga Momanyi warned against improper use of nets for kitchen garden fences, stating that those found using them improperly or selling them would face arrest and prosecution.

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