Villagers in Siaya on Wednesday forced a man who had secretly buried his wife in a shallow grave to exhume the body so that the deceased woman could be given a decent send off.
Residents of Ujwang’a village in Sigoma/Uranga sub location in Alego Ward, Siaya County were shocked after word went round that the 35-year-old man, identified only as Opiyo had interred the remains of the late Marcella Tala without informing anyone of her death.
According to the villagers, the deceased, who was aged 25 years, had been ailing for a long time and the husband had been heard on several occasions lamenting that the sickness had drained him financially and emotionally.
Area assistant chief, Nicholas Ayimba, who confirmed the incident, said neighbours raised alarm after realizing that Opiyo had secretly buried his wife in a shallow grave.
“I rushed to the home and indeed confirmed that Opiyo had interred the wife’s body without informing anybody of her death,” said the administrator.
Ayimba said that he ordered that relatives from both spouses’ sides be informed of the incident to enable them put their heads together for a proper funeral.
He said that the two families, after discussion, reached a compromise that the body be exhumed and taken to a mortuary.
“It was exhumed and found that it was wrapped in just a bed sheet,” he said, adding that the body was taken to Ukwala sub county hospital mortuary in the neighbouring Ugenya sub county.
The assistant chief ruled out rumours that the man could have murdered the ailing wife before resorting to secretly bury her, adding that the deceased could have died after defaulting on the uptake of HIV/AIDs drugs.
The South West Alego location Chief, Simon Olwendo told the media that it was the deceased’s relatives who took the body to the mortuary.
Olwendo said that the man, who has also been sickly and not in a proper state of mind, has not been arrested.
By Philip Onyango