Siaya oil tragedy: Agony as body of orphan lies unidentified since no kin is available to provide DNA sample

By , K24 Digital
On Fri, 6 Aug, 2021 11:58 | 2 mins read
Relatives of the Siaya oil tragedy victims collect the bodies of their relatives at Yala Hospital Mortuary on Friday, August 6.Photo/File.

Two families of the Siaya oil tragedy victims have protested after they were denied the bodies of their kin for burial.

According to North Gem ward representative Nick Ochola, the bodies of the two were burned beyond recognition making it difficult for the DNA test to ascertain which body belongs to which family. 

Speaking on Friday, August 6 at Yala hospital morgue where 11 of the 19 bodies were released by the government for burial, Hellen Ouma expressed her frustration after her family was denied the body of Samuel Omondi.

Hellen who claims that she can identify her brother’s body revealed that she has undergone DNA tests many times but she was told the results were inconclusive. 

"I have been tested severally here at Yala Referral Hospital yet I am told that my results are inconclusive, kindly give me the body of my brother we bury him,” Hellen said amid sobs. 

The family of Sharon Adhiambo is also in distress after they were denied the body of their kin. Authorities say it was difficult to identify Sharon’s body since she was an orphan and there was no close family relation whose DNA test could be used in identifying her body.

Pezi Omondi, the cousin to Sharon argued that if if Hellen can identify his brother's body as she claims, then the remaining body belongs to her cousin Sharon.

"If Hellen can identify his brother's body then the remaining body is for my cousin Sharon," Pezi said.

The two families are now calling on the government to release the bodies for their kin like the others for burial scheduled scheduled for today, Friday, August 6.

However, Yala ward representative, Frederick Ochieng called on the family to wait as they are in consultation with the authorities.

“We wanted to have a joint service for the 21 families but due to the Covid-19 regulations, that could not happen,” the North Gem ward rep said adding that Siaya county government took up all the burial costs including transportation of the bodies to their final resting place. 

19 bodies have been released for burial. 11 from Yala Referral hospital and 8 from Siaya Referral Hospital mortuaries.