Mungiki leader’s kin want police to get out of his house
Published on April 13, 2008, 12:00 am
By Cyrus Ombati
The family of Mungiki national chairman Mr Maina Njenga, whose wife and driver were murdered, want police occupying his palatial house in Kitengela to vacate immediately.
The family wants the General Service Unit officers living there to move out to give the grieving relatives time and space to organise the burial of Njenga’s wife, Virginia Nyakio.
The family, which met at a Nairobi hotel on Saturday resolved to bury Nyakio at the compound of the house they claim the officers are occupying illegally.
“We have resolved to bury her at the Kitengela home. Let the officers occupying the house move out immediately,” said Njenga’s brother, Mr Peter Njoroge.
GSU officers have been using the house as a patrol base to guard the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport since 2005. A contingent of GSU and CID officers raided the home in 2005 and arrested a handful of followers who were allegedly found taking an oath and practising other rituals.
Authorities claimed the house, which belongs to Njenga, was built from the proceeds of the banned sect’s activities.
Njenga has another home in Nyandarua but the family said they preferred to bury the deceased in Kitengela.
Meanwhile, a group of female Mungiki followers have demanded the release of Njenga, saying his incarceration was political.
The women, who met at the City Mortuary on Saturday, staged a brief protest against the killings before police broke it up.
Kilimani Officer Commanding Police Division, Mr Hassan Abdi, termed the protest illegal.
Mungiki is a banned group that has been linked to a number of brutal murders, extortion and abductions.
A group of youth calling themselves “friends of Njenga” said they were watching the unfolding events on the killings targeted at the sect followers. They threatened to “react” when appropriate.
The bodies of Nyakio and her driver, George Njoroge, were found dumped in Gakoe Forest, Gatundu, on Wednesday, a day after their abduction.
The badly mutilated bodies had deep cuts in the head, neck and other areas. They were discovered alongside two other decayed bodies.
Police took them to City Mortuary and booked them as unknown. The body of Nyakio, who is also a parliamentary loser in last year’s General Election in Laikipia West, had a deep cut in the neck while Njoroge was hit several times in the head.
The two were abducted by unknown people on Lang’ata Road, on Tuesday afternoon as they drove in a white Toyota car.
The Toyota Rav4 has not been recovered.
Police, who said they were investigating the incident, added that they had not made any arrests.
Nyakio was a mother of three while Njoroge had one child.
Njenga’s family have accused the police of being behind the killings, and demanded an explanation.
Njoroge’s brother, Charles Ndung’u, claimed police had been reluctant to investigate the incident.
“They have not helped us at all. This is the same way people accused of being members of Mungiki have been killed by police,” said Ndung’u.
He denied claims that a faction of the sect had killed the two, over control of power in the proscribed movement.
Ndung’u said none of the sect adherents “can dare kill” close relatives of their chairman.
Njoroge said the victims’ mobile phones had been off since they went missing.
“Their mobile phones were switched off since then and we think they were attacked by people who knew them,” said Njoroge.
He said the driver had called a cousin immediately after they were attacked, but did not communicate.
“All he heard was the driver pleading with the attackers not to kill them, then the phone went off,” said Njoroge.
He said police had in the last one month been trailing members of the family, and demanded that they produce the two.
Njoroge said the incident was related to last week’s police raid on Njenga’s rural home in Oroimutia, Nyandarua North District.
“We believe police abducted my brother’s wife and his driver for reasons not known to us. They have been trailing members of our family in the recent past but we never thought they would go this far,” he alleged.
Police spokesman, Mr Eric Kiraithe, denied police involvement in the killings. He said they were investigating the incident.
Njenga is serving time at Naivasha Maximum Prison for being in possession of a gun and drugs.