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Mwai Kibaki private secretary allays fears about ex-president's health

Thursday October 31 2019

Former President Mwai Kibaki in Kiambu.

Former President Mwai Kibaki during a function in Kiambu County on April 21 21, 2018. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

HARRY MISIKO
By HARRY MISIKO
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MARY WAMBUI
By MARY WAMBUI
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Retired President Mwai Kibaki is not admitted to hospital as some media reports suggested on Thursday, his Private Secretary Ngari Gituku has said.

However, the 88-year-old retired head of state visited The Nairobi Hospital on Monday, a trip Mr Gituku described as “a routine check-up”.

“It was a normal visit and there is nothing new,” he told the Nation on phone.

While Mr Kibaki has been battling a recurrent knee problem after sustaining an injury in a road crash in Machakos in 2002, Mr Gituku could not confirm if it was the reason for the latest visit.

“At his age and stature, they can check anything (during routine medical trips), including the hair follicle, the prostrate and eyesight,” he said.

'ALERT'

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A source who sought anonymity because she is not the family spokesperson said the retired president is recuperating at his Nairobi home and that he is “alert”.

Mr Kibaki’s visit to The Nairobi Hospital came on the same day Kenya’s second and longest serving President Daniel Arap Moi returned there for what his Press Secretary Lee Njiru said was a “routine exam”.

However, a family source told the Nation that the Nyayo-era leader was rushed to the facility on October 18 after developing breathing problems.

Mr Kibaki, the former Narc Party leader, is set to celebrate his 89th birthday on November 15.

He was first admitted to The Nairobi Hospital on January 20, 2004. His medical team at the time said they found a blood clot in his right leg.

In August 2016, the former leader underwent a surgery at Netcare Sunninghill Hospital in South Africa to remove a blood clot in a vein in his neck.

A South African source told Nation that doctors at the facility located the clot in good time while it was in a relatively safe part of the body.