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Hospital blocks visitors as Raila "rests"

THE STAR 03/11/2021

Doctor says ODM leader came for routine check up after feeling fatigued

Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga View pictures in App save up to 80% data.

Nairobi Hospital security team blocked all visitors who wanted to see ODM leader Raila Odinga.

His doctors led by his personal physician, Dr David Olunya, said the former Prime Minister had been advised to take a rest after he felt fatigued.

“Raila walked in for routine medical tests at The Nairobi Hospital on March 9 after feeling some fatigue. He has had a rigorous campaign and needed to have some check-ups. This was carried out successfully,” said Dr Olunya, a consultant neurosurgeon.

Yesterday, sources told the Star that Raila had gone through a thorough examination of his body and all the results were negative.

"From Covid-19 to his internal organs to his brain we have done all the tests. Most of the results are negative and the rest will be out by tomorrow. For now, the doctors have said he should rest," said a source aware of the goings-on.

Raila's son Junior said his father had called him to find out the progress of his grandson and was in good spirits.

"Thanks everyone who called to find out how Baba is, he is good and actually called for a few minutes ago to speak with his grandson about school and importance of porridge, he’s in very good spirits," Junior tweeted. 

On Wednesday, a team of Luo Nyanza lawmakers planned a lunchtime visit to Nairobi Hospital where the ODM leader was still under doctor’s observation.

Olunya said Raila was still being monitored but there was no cause for alarm.

“We are continuing to monitor his condition, and no doubt he will be able to address the country in due course. He is in good spirits,” he said.

Raila's elder brother Oburu Odinga also said the former PM was recovering well.

“He is in good condition,” Oburu said

Sources said only a handful of Raila's close political allies have been allowed limited access.

Several MPs said they have been kept in the dark since reports of Raila’s ailment emerged with most of them following news in the media just like other Kenyans.

“We had planned to go and see him (Raila) but we were advised against it. They (Raila handlers) advised that we will create unnecessary commotion,” said a lawmaker who requested not to be named.

The  Star has however established that the Nyanza MPs have convened an urgent "Duol" meeting on Wednesday evening where the issue was widely expected to dominate deliberations.

The meeting was to be hosted at the residence of Kabondo Kasipul MP Eve Obara in Lavington, Nairobi.

Initially, Raila was to attend the meeting which is often held on a rotational basis.

“Colleagues, this is to confirm that our Duol dinner is on 10/3/2021 as planned at Hon. Eva Obara House on ..., Lavington starting at 6pm. Note the Pin on Duol Whatsapp,” read part of the invite sent by Duol chairman James Nyikal.

Raila’s hospitalisation comes at the peak of 2022 succession and Building Bridges Initiative politics.

It is feared that it will deal a big blow to the law change process as the Opposition chief, known as a workhorse, is down.

On Tuesday, Dennis Onyango told the Star that Raila was also due for his annual check-up conducted every March. Onyango is Raila's spokesman.

“He checked in for a complete series of tests because he has been on a countrywide tour from Turkana to Narok to Busia and Coast region without rest. The doctors have advised that he takes complete rest as they continue to run tests,” Onyango said. 

Oburu on Wednesday told Citizen Digital that the former Prime Minister was in stable condition and that there was no need for alarm.

The EALA lawmaker added that when he left Raila at the hospital on Tuesday night, the results of medical tests, including that of Covid-19 were not yet in.

He however ruled out any fears of Covid-19 infection saying the ODM supremo exhibited no signs.

“I was there with him last night, but the medical tests had not come back on Covid-19 but from what I observed, he did not have breathing complications or chest pains, just general fatigue and body aches,” Oburu said.

“Everyone falls sick, there is nothing to mourn about or be sad about because everyone falls sick, there is really nothing serious on Raila’s admission,” he said.

In June last year, the former Prime Minister quietly flew to Dubai where he underwent successful minor surgery. Doctors at a Dubai-based hospital identified the problem in his back.

At first, his ODM party claimed he was attending some virtual meeting on Pan African Conference on the Grand Inga Dam in DRC Congo.

It took Oburu to confirm that the ex-Prime Minister was out of the country for treatment.

“Jakom (Raila) is out of the country for a minor surgical operation on his back. It is not a serious health issue, but just a minor one. So, he’s okay,” Oburu said on June 25 last year

He returned to the country on July 12.

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