K’Ogalo top fan Jaro Soja urges Sports ministry to give his ‘brother-in-arms’ Isaac Juma befitting send-off
Renowned football fan Jared Otieno Obonyo, commonly known as Jaro Soldier, has urged Sports Cabinet Secretary (CS) Amina Mohamed to give the country’s ‘number one’ fan Isaac Juma a befitting send-off, similar to the one of two-time world championships bronze medallist and 10km world record holder Agnes Tirop was accorded in October last year.
The government through the Ministry of Sports played a key role in the burial of Tirop who was found stabbed to death in her house in Iten, and later organised a massive seminar in South Coast in her memory. The February 12, World Cross Country Tour in Eldoret has also been renamed Agnes Tirop Cross Country.
“Juma has done a lot for this country for the last 20 years and more. Apart from being the top football fan, he also never missed key athletics and rugby events locally. As a national hero, the government, through the Ministry of Sports should accord him a good send off, just like they did for Tirop,” Jaro Soldier told People Sport.
He added: “The government should also build him a proper house before he is buried, because he brought a lot of fame to the country but was living a poor life, and also ensure all his children get proper education. Mumias Complex should also be renamed to Isaac Juma stadium in his memory.”
Police last week arrested the suspect behind the murder of Juma.
According to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), the 27-year-old suspect was arrested at his house after preliminary investigations linked him to Juma’s death.
The report stated that the 58-year-old and his family had just taken their evening meal at their home in Ebuyenjere village in Mumias, when his killers struck, according to the agency.
Earlier in the night, children who were taking their supper outside the house had reported seeing silhouettes of human beings lurking against the fence.
“They went back to the house and reported to their parents who took the matter lightly. Moments later, they heard a commotion in the sheep pen and immediately afterwards the sheep began bleating, prompting Juma and his 17-year-old son to dash outside,” the DCI stated.
“But before they could establish what was happening, a group of men armed with machetes attacked them, hacking Juma to death. His teenage son however managed to cheat death narrowly, by escaping to the farm,” the report added.
The DCI said that they suspect that Onyango’s death may be related to land issues pointing out that they had launched a manhunt for other suspects.
“Isaac Juma who was a newspaper vendor in Nakuru before retiring to his farm in Mumias, was an ardent football fan who religiously supported the country’s national team Harambee Stars and the AFC Leopards,” the agency said.
Soja recalled the numerous trips they travelled with Juma and the passion he had for the national team that included not greeting or coming close to women on the eve and on the day of the match.