Residents of Bahati Estate in Nairobi are now living in fear after one of their own was brutally attacked by stray dogs.
On August 18, nine-year-old Ian Gitonga was enjoying his school break, playing with his friends. Unknown to the children, the very place where he grew up would be where he almost died.
Gitonga and his friends live near Morison Primary School; their homes literally share a fence with the school, making it easy for them to enjoy the school’s playground.
The only way to access the playground is through the main gate which, to our astonishment when we visited the area, was wide open with no one manning it. A few metres ahead lay the beasts of terror that have caused residents sleepless nights – eight ferocious dogs.
The dogs quickly scattered when we arrived. Two sandals covered with blood could be seen across the field, prompting one to move closer. Next to one of the sandals is a tin that Gitonga was said to be playing with when the canines attacked.
“It was a Monday, around lunchtime, and my friends and I were playing at home with a tin.
“Someone accidentally sent the tin over the fence where it landed in the school compound. Minutes later, I went to get it. When I got to the playground, I came face to face with seven dogs with jaws primed to bite. They pounced on me and pinned me to the ground,” said Gitonga from his bed at the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) where he is being treated following the attack.