How Kianjokoma brothers search ended in morgue
The parents of the late Kianjokoma brothers emotionally narrated to the court yesterday the last moments with their sons and how they painfully searched for them before learning of their death.
The two Kianjokoma brothers, Benson Njiru Ndwiga, 22, and Emmanuel Mutura Ndwiga, 19, met their death on August 1, 2021 at Kianjokoma Trading Centre while they were heading home at the height of curfew enforcement.
Six police officers are charged with their murder. They include Benson Mputhia, Consolata Kariuki, Nicholas Cheruiyot, Martin Wanyama, Lilian Chemuna and James Mwaniki.“They were wonderful boys, very industrious…I have never had any issues with them…they were ready to take on the world …,” the father, John Ndwiga who was the first to testify told the court.
Ndwiga, an engineer, told Justice Daniel Ogembo that on the fateful day that his boys lost their lives, he had talked to Benson. “The boys wanted some change…. They were selling pork at a market called Thinjeru … they were at home since it was a long holiday,” he told the court.
Ndwiga, a father of four, said he arrived home at about 10pm and was informed that the boys had not returned, which was unusual, as they had never slept outside.
“I tried calling them but their phones did not go through… so we left the main gate and the house open so that they could get in…The following morning, we checked their rooms and the boys had not returned,” narrated the father.
He said together with his wife, they went to the shopping centre and that is where they learnt that there were people who had been arrested by police from Manyatta police station over curfew rules.
“We went to the station together with a family friend…At the reception, I gave the police officer my sons’ names and asked him to find out if they were among those arrested…. He went inside and told me they were not in custody…The officer asked me to check with other police stations,” he told the court.
Ndwiga said he went to several police stations including Embu police station, Runyenjes and Gitagua in search of the boys.“We made calls to all posts but the boys’ names were still not there…At that time, it was already getting dark, we had hoped they would have already come back home so we went home at 9pm but they were not yet back,” he told the court.
Ndwiga stated that on 3rd August, they went back to Runyenjes police station and filed a missing persons’ report.
“At that time, I remembered their phones could be tracked so I talked to the OCS who directed me to DCIO. As I was explaining to the OCS, she asked me ‘have you not heard about that case of Manyatta?’ to which I told her no then she referred me to DCIO,” he told the court.
Ndwiga said he gave the DCIO the timeline of his boys and the latter directed him to go back to Manyatta.
At Manyatta, he spoke to the OCS who told him that there were two detainees who had been arrested at Mutora, Kianjokoma and while they were being taken to police custody, they jumped out of the moving vehicle.
“The OCS told me ‘those boys died’ ... he said it is very unfortunate and showed me photos of the boys on his mobile phone where I identified them,” he told the court. He said they were taken to the Embu mortuary where they found the bodies of the two boys.
“I went back to Manyatta to register my complaint, I found the OCPD and told her, Manyatta was the first place I reported and after going to all police stations, I was referred back…I told her unless they were hiding something, they were not doing justice to the boys,” he told the court.
“Benson must have suffered a lot. The entire head was deformed. He had bruises and I can recall on one leg, a bone was protruding out…For Emanuel, it was only the head…I remember the brain was coming out,” he told the court.
Their mother, Catherine Wawera Gichuki also narrated how she last talked to the boys at around 9pm on the fateful day and how their phones went off at around 10 pm. She explained how their business was doing very well on the said day. “My sons never slept outside, I saw them at the morgue, Ben did not have the leg…. If they had brains, they would have known my sons were not drunk….. Ben died trying to save his brother …,” she said.
The hearing continues.