Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu on Thursday, July 9, while going about her business along Uhuru Highway in Nairobi County stopped her vehicle after spotting a Tanzanian woman begging on the streets.

The county boss revealed that it was a malignant growth on the 20-year-old Tanzanian national’s face that got her attention.

“On interacting with her further I learned that she has been living with this condition for a long time and had come to Kenya with the hope of meeting well-wishers to help her undergo a maxillofacial operation to correct the growth,” Ngilu stated.

The woman sat on the pavement with her child as the governor engaged her on the health problem.

The Kitui governor offered to pay for the expenses of the operation adding that it would be conducted in her county where four other similar surgeries had been conducted at the Kitui Referral hospital.

“The patient has been picked, and is now in an ambulance on her way to Kitui Referral hospital,” she stated.

A maxillofacial surgery is a surgical specialty focusing on reconstructive surgery of the face, facial trauma surgery, the oral cavity, head and neck, mouth, and jaws, as well as facial cosmetic surgery.

According to a report by Winchester Hospital, certain jaw problems make it hard for the upper and lower teeth to line up as they should leading to difficultly chewing or biting speech problems, and breathing problems.

The surgery can be performed to improve the health of the patient or as a cosmetic procedure to enhance the appearance or symmetry of the face.

The length of surgery will depend on the particular needs but it generally takes between two to four hours.

The surgery may be performed due to a  growth on the side of the mouth that may change the positioning of the jaw.

In 2018, Maxillofacial surgeon Arelis Castillo conducted her first surgery at the Kitui Referral Hospital on a 62-year-old farmer in Kitui county, who had lived with a facial deformity for 30 years.

Dr. Castillo examined the Tanzanian national brought by the governor and is expected to perform the surgery.