Irate residents of Kamaindi Location in Chuka Igambang’ombe constituency, Tharaka Nithi County on Wednesday night murdered the area Chief, Japhet Mayau by cutting him into pieces with crude weapons before setting his body ablaze over a long cold relationship.
The County Commissioner(CC), Beverly Opwora confirmed the incident and noted that her officers were on the ground following up the matter to establish what transpired.
The County Police Commander (CPC), Charles Mbatu declined to address media on the progress of the investigations into the matter.
The residents are reported to have been angered by the administrator’s brother Gikware Mukengu who had refused to release some goats belonging to a resident Zephaniah Gitonga Kibiube who went missing in December only for his body to be found some weeks ago.
The late Mr. Gitonga had gone to bathe at River Thuci on December 12 last year but did not return home forcing the family to start searching for him and even notified the Chief to help them share information and see if they would find their kin.
On April 4 this year, the remains of his body were found in a sack at a section of the river where the Chief together with his brother and their sons had reportedly enclosed after Gitonga went missing raising suspicion.
The villagers reported to Igambang’ombe Deputy County Commissioner that the Chief’s brother had refused to release the goats that had encroached into his land and the administrator sent the Chief to help resolve the matter.
According to a resident who sought anonymity due to sensitivity of the matter, the Chief proceeded to Gikware home where hundreds of locals baying for his blood had gathered and unaware, they descended on him with crude weapons killing him on spot.
“The brother managed to escape from the furious mob before the Chief’s body was set on fire,” the resident told Kenya News Agency (KNA).
The Chief’s body was moved to Chuka County Referral Hospital Mortuary.
At least 100 residents last week held demos at the village and marched towards the river where the late Gitonga remains were found demanding justice for the aggrieved family.
The Tharaka Nithi County security team led by CC Opwora is currently investigating the matter.
By Kenneth Marangu