Kenya’s man of the hour Boniface Murage, the desperate father who smuggled his baby from Kenyatta National Hospital to avoid a Ksh56K bill, is a relieved man after he was freed Tuesday.
“I am happy with the ruling of the court,” said Murage after he was handed a favourable three-month suspended sentence.
Murage, who now has to steer clear of any criminal offence in the three months or risk a custodial sentence, said he and his wife took their baby to KNH after she developed a fever. The child was admitted on January 26 and discharged on February 11, with Murage unable to raise enough cash to settle the bill.
“The mother and the baby were in the hospital for three weeks. When the time came for my baby to be discharged the bill had reached Sh56,000,” he said outside the corridors of justice.
Recalling his failed attempt to smuggle his child on Sunday, Murage, 22, said as he was taking breakfast to his wife, he decided that he will take the baby out of the hospital without the knowledge of the wife.
“I took tea to her but then I had prepared the bag [a blue one with toy pictures] for putting the baby. So I took the baby and put her carefully in the bag,” he said.
When he reached the security checkpoint, he was asked about what was in the bag. Murage said he was not afraid.
“They looked at the bag, then one of them asked me what was below the clothes. When they looked, they found the baby,” he said.
“The baby was safe and secure since I wrapped her properly and even left space for her to breathe since she was fast asleep.”
That is when he was arrested and dragged through the court process until Kenyans of goodwill and politicians intervened.
Murage who is unemployed said Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has promised to offer him a job.
“I know that my life will change after this promise from the Governor. I am grateful,” added the relieved Rongai resident.
In a statement to newsrooms on Tuesday, Sonko said Murage will be given a job within the county’s environment department.