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86-year-old granny dies after falling into pit latrine

An 86-year-old woman died while being rushed to hospital after a pit latrine caved in as she answered a call of nature in Tana River County.

Malika Guyato’s life could have been saved but an oxygen-facilitated ambulance was not immediately available to rush her to a hospital in Malindi.

The elderly woman had attended morning mass at a Catholic Church when she excused herself to go to the toilet.

Security guards raised alarm after the latrine crumbled.

The elderly woman was half buried in human waste, with a block weighing heavy on her chest.

“We heard the security guard screaming and calling for help, so we cut short the mass and ran out to see what was happening only to find our elderly woman in the pit latrine,” said Jane Simon, a church member.


Their efforts to rescue her did not yield much. It took the intervention of the Kenya Red Cross Society team to save the woman from drowning, an exercise that lasted an hour.

Mama Malika was later pulled out of the pit latrine and rushed to Hola District hospital for treatment.

Speaking to the Nation, senior theatre nurse Janet Abio said further diagnosis revealed that Malika had suffered three broken ribs, a dislocated arm and a fractured leg.

She had internal bleeding that resulted in difficulties in breathing. The doctor on duty had to improvise to drain the blood from the lungs as there were no proper equipment for the exercise.

“We carried out a number of diagnosis on her and found that she had three broken ribs leading to an internal bleeding, which caused her difficulty in breathing. But we managed to stop the internal bleeding and she has been picking up,” she said

The doctor later advised that Malika be immediately referred to Malindi for specialized treatment.


Malika was to be ferried to Malindi in an oxygen facilitated ambulance which is not available in the hospital and had to be hired from the KRCS.

The ambulance arrived hours later and Malika’s journey to Malindi began.

Unfortunately, Malika Guyato passed on at Marereni, several kilometres to Garsen.

The family has blamed the hospital for sluggishness in attending to patients and responding to emergencies.

Malika’s granddaughter, Florence Kidada called on Tana River governor to swiftly address the situation at the hospital.

“It is so unfortunate that our so called referral hospital has no drugs, has no experts to handle emergencies, no oxygen facilitated ambulance and very poor services. Our referral hospital is referring all patients to Malindi. It is so unfortunate,” she said.

Hola District Hospital is just one among many in the county that has deplorable facilities with lack equipment and insufficient stuff.

Patients in the hospital have also complained over poor service delivery and lack of drugs despite the governor affirming to the people less than a month ago, that each hospital had received a consignment of drugs and were well stocked.