Kenya’s former boxing champion, Conjestina Achieng, is responding well to treatment following her admission to Mediva Wellness Centre, a rehabilitation facility in Thika, early last month.
The National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA) on Tuesday dispatched a team of its personnel who, after consulting with her family, picked her up from her home in Yala and drove her to Thika to star her rehabilitation programme. She was accompanied by her sister and son Charltone Otieno.
Although the Authority does not have a budget line for treatment of persons with drug use disorders, it was obliged to join the rest of Kenyans who were responding to the call to the plight of the former boxing Champion.
Accordingly, the Authority committed to settle the cost of one month’s rehabilitation for the athlete.
Confirming the development, NACADA Chief Executive Officer Victor Okioma underscored the need to ensure that Conjestina was taken through the rehabilitation process in good time to avoid further deterioration of the athlete’s health.
Mr. Okioma noted that Conjestina had previously been admitted to another rehabilitation facility with the support of Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko and her current condition was due to a relapse.
The CEO called on County Governments to invest on public rehabilitation facilities to enhance access to affordable rehabilitation services as most of the existing rehabilitation centers are private and commercial and therefore inaccessible to majority of needy Kenyans.
“We call on other Kenyans of goodwill and partners to support this initiative so that this icon of female boxing in Kenya receives the much needed treatment and support so that she can get back on her feet. As a role model to many and upcoming boxers Conjestina’s good health is important so that she can continue mentoring young boxers,” added Okioma.
NACADA acknowledges that relapse is part of recovery and the Authority will continue supporting Conjestina and her family throughout this process.
The Authority further urges the community and media to play a key role in destigmatizing mental health issues.
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