Mercy Mwai and Wangari Njuguna @PeopleDailyKe
Kandara Member of Parliament Alice Wahome yesterday said criminal gangs, including the outlawed Mungiki sect, 42 Brothers and Usiku Sacco, were extorting parents of boys who undergo circumcision.
The MP, who broke down during a press conference to condemn the death of a boy who died after circumcision, asked Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i and Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet to investigate the incident.
“I am calling upon the Interior CS to ensure that this matter is investigated and those behind this heinous crime are brought to book,” she said.
Juliano Kanyonyo Mbatho, 15, who was recovering from circumcision died a few days after he learnt that he had scored 376 marks in this year’s Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exam.
Wahome said many boys in her constituency were undergoing torture in the name of initiation into manhood.
“I am sorry I couldn’t control myself. This must stop, no other boy should lose his life under such circumstances,” said the MP.
Kanyonyo, who sat his KCPE exam at Gatitu Primary School, died in what is suspected to be torture by a man who acted as his mutiiri (mentor) during the rite of passage.
The 20-year-old man is said to have demanded Sh2,000 from Kanyonyo’s mother for his services. But the woman, who is a widow, could not raise the money, and gave him Sh1,200, a hen and a cockerel.
Sources say the man rejected the cockerel, saying it was too small. Her attempts to look for a bigger cockerel were unsuccessful. Shortly after the disagreement, she found her son motionless and foaming at the mouth. Kanyoyo’s family is demanding justice.
“We want to know what killed our brother. He was a bright boy and we had a lot of hope in him. We had gone through a lot as a family since the death of our father 10 years ago and only depended on our mother, a casual labourer. Now our hope is gone,” said his sister Lucy Njoki.
When we visited his home yesterday, Kanyonyo’s mother was away at the Thika Level Five Hospital morgue to witness the postmortem of his body.
Gatitu Primary School head teacher Mshara Ng’ang’a described Kanyonyo as disciplined and bright, adding that news of his demise came as a shock to the school fraternity.
Police in Murang’a are pursuing five suspects believed to have had a hand in the murder.
According to Murang’a county commander Farah Mohammed, a postmortem revealed the boy could been assaulted.