The heartbreaking story of a widow in Mombasa who boiled stones to give hope to her children that she was cooking after a period of no meals has appalled Kenyans.
Peninah Kitsao, a mother of eight from Kisauni can feel the pain of COVID-19 pandemic which has pushed her to the edge.
She on Wednesday said that she has had to boil stones for a few days just to give some ray of hope to her children who are wallowing in hunger but the trick is no longer working.
“I have had nothing to feed my children on and so I decided to put the stones in the sufuria and boil them so that my children would think that I am cooking something for them,” she told a local news outlet.
“They started telling me that they know I am lying to them, but I could do nothing because I have nothing,” she added.
Kitsao, 36, survives on menial jobs. Since the pandemic hit Kenyan in March, life has taken another turn for her even before the death of her husband killed by a gang a few months ago sinks.
Her laundry services are no longer marketable as people are apprehensive of letting anyone into their houses due to coronavirus.
“That’s where I used to get my little money from but now things have changed. I have nowhere to run to and my children keep on crying because of hunger,” she added.
Her story dents Governor Hassan Joho’s food aid to Mombasa residents who have been affected by the outbreak.
Joho together with tycoon Suleiman Shahbal have worked tirelessly into mobilizing resources – food – to donate to over 277,000 vulnerable households in the county.
For Kitsao though, she has not received the food aid from the county government. Mombasa residents have now questioned the food drive by the county administration, questions the administration is yet to respond to.
Well-wishers have started visiting her house.
“I have children like her. I felt sorry for her and I decided to come and share the little I have,” one of the well-wishers stated.