Pathologists carrying out autopsies on the bodies of victims of Pastor Paul Mackenzie’s cultic teachings have found that some people were strangled or smothered to death.
Chief Government Pathologist Dr. Johansen Oduor said the bodies of two children had signs of smothering while that of one had a trauma on the head, a testimony that a blunt object could have been used on the victim.
Briefing journalists on the progress of the postmortems going on at the Malindi Sub County Hospital Mortuary Tuesday evening, Dr. Oduor said his team had conducted autopsies on 30 bodies, eight of male and 22 of female victims.
He said 15 of the bodies were of adults while nine were of children, and that the genders of six bodies could not be ascertained due to the level of decomposition and skeletonization.
He said his team found out that most of them were caused by starvation with two having the features of starvation, while the cause of the death of six could not be ascertained due to their level of decomposition.
“On one of the bodies which was of a child, we found that there was trauma on the head, while three had asphyxia meaning that they had been denied oxygen. Of these three, on one of them, we clearly see marks on the neck of someone who had been strangled with the breaking of some bones,” he said.
He said his team was certain that one person, who was a child, was strangulated while the other two had been smothered.
Dr. Oduor at the same time said relatives had started giving their blood samples for the commencement of DNA tests, hinting that the exercise could be completed on Thursday.
Meanwhile, human rights activists have faulted the government for denying them a chance to witness the autopsies.
Mathew Shipeta of Haki Africa said human rights organizations should be allowed to send representatives, including lawyers to witness the exercise to ensure transparency.
However, Dr. Oduor said the human rights activists had no role to play in the autopsies except for their representatives to be traumatized.
By Emmanuel Masha