Police in Murang’a have blamed the rising cases of suicides to a breakdown of morals and increased use of drugs.
Kandara divisional commander Wilson Kosgey said the cases have reached alarming proportions and called on families to take addicts to hospital or rehabilitation centres instead of isolating them.
Mr Kosgey added that publicly shaming such individuals only increases the chances of suicide.
The police boss said a man in Riandegwa village killed himself last week after a dispute with his wife.
He said the man's wife left because she could not no longer tolerate "his embarrassing medical condition".
"He took to alcohol when the woman left. His body was found dangling from a mango tree near his home," Mr Kosgey said.
The police boss added that another man killed himself in Githumu village.
He said police officers found anti-retroviral drugs under his mattress when they arrived to take the body to the mortuary.
Mr Kosgey said the man's relatives were shocked because he had never disclosed his condition to them even when his health deteriorated.
ARVs IN BAG
He added that in yet another incident, a resident who had moved to Nairobi arrived in his village and killed himself.
Like in the second case, officers found ARVs in one of his bags.
“In one week, police in Kandara handle three or four suicide cases. Something needs to be done urgently. Families, relatives and friends should be able to tell suicidal behaviour," the police chief told the Nation.
“These people need emotional and moral support. They should be encouraged to go for counselling or seek treatment if they are sick. Rebuking the victims or gossiping about them does not help.”
The family of Josphat Kinyanjui, 37, the man whose body was found hanging near his house, blamed his wife for what happened.
Mr Peter Kinyanjui said his daughter-in-law driving his son to take his life "by not keeping family secrets".
"She left with her two children and all the property to another man's home. This is what destroyed my son," the old man said, adding that the woman gossiped about his son wetting the bed.
“My son saw it as the end of the world. She should never have disclosed his medical problem to other people,” he said.
Josphat worked at Kabati slaughterhouse.
According a Sgt Moses Kimenchu, an addiction counsellor, suicidal thoughts are triggered by rejection, poor parenting and drug abuse.
“When one has an ‘embarrassing' condition, he or she needs love and affection from family and society," Sgt Kimenchu said.
"Rejection could lead to suicidal thoughts or uptake of drugs. This impairs judgment and affects self-esteem.”
He challenged religious leaders to change their approach when dealing with the sick.