A woman was on Saturday evening locked inside her two-roomed rental house with a sick 20-month-old baby over alleged rent arrears in Njoro subcounty, Nakuru.
Rhoda Makoha’s other four children were housed by neighbours because they were locked outside their house as they played.
Despite her plea to be allowed more time to sell her household and the agent welded the door closed, leaving her without food or exit to answer to call of nature.
The Star reached out to Njoro OCPD Mohammed Huka, who deployed the area OCS and his officers to break into the house and rescue the woman and the baby.
Makoha said she had tried to reach Egernex Commercial agency through Bernard Omumbo but her pleas fell on deaf ears.
The single mother said she owed her landlord Sh10,000 for four months, including July.
She is unable to raise her rent because her business outside Egerton University was adversely affected since March, when the first Covid-19 case was reported in the country.
“Business at Egeron trading centre is entirely dependent on students and everything went down when schools and universities were shut down,” she said through the window.
Makoha said she locked herself in the house for fear of being thrown out, only for the agent to weld the door shut.
She said she has lived in the house for six years, from where she also operates a kibanda (stall) business.
“I have been paying my rent promptly for six years and I was hoping that the agent could consider that before kicking me out,” she said.
Fred Kimani, a neighbour, said landlords and their agents should understand the current situation and be considerate to tenants who have been promptly paying rent.
Huka warned landlords and agencies against such actions, saying Omumbo will serve as an example to others like him.
Njoro police are now looking for the agent. He said there are lawful procedures that ought to be followed before throwing out tenants.