In Summary
  • The eight children aged between 9 and 13 years failed to return from a hunting expedition in Mabiu Kivonga forest since Sunday morning.
  • Lamu East OCPD Emmanuel Okanda confirmed to have received reports of seven children that had gotten lost.

Parents in Kizingitini Island in Lamu East have mounted a search for eight children who failed to return from a hunting expedition in a nearby forest since Sunday morning.

The parents are yet to come to terms with the absence of the children aged between nine and 13 years.

Speaking to the Nation on Monday, Kizingitini headman Kassim Shee said the children left home at around 9am on Sunday and headed towards Mabiu Kivonga which is a mangrove forest to hunt for monkeys and weaver birds.

“They left the village at around 9am on Sunday armed with catapults and other gadgets. They went deep into the Mabiu Kivonga Forest with aim of hunting down and killing monkeys and weaver birds as is their norm. We’re shocked that up to now they haven’t come back home. This is the first time. We’re used to the children coming back shortly after the hunting,” said Mr Shee.

AGONISED PARENTS

Mr Omar Najah, one of the agonised parents, appealed to the government to assist them trace their children.

Mr Najah expressed worry about the state of their children as their efforts to search for them since Sunday afternoon have proved futile.

“The whereabouts of my son and those he accompanied are unknown. I last saw my child within the compound yesterday at around 8am. He didn’t tell me that he would be leaving for a hunting venture. I became worried when it got to 6pm without seeing him back. We immediately mounted a search but up to now we haven’t spotted them anywhere. We’re proceeding with the search today and we’re hoping that we will find our lost children,” said Mr Najah.

Mrs Fatuma Badi said together with other affected parents, they had already reported the matter to the police and that they were expecting something would be done to assist them get their children.

“It’s almost 24 hours now that have elapsed since our children disappeared. You can imagine the pain of spending a whole night without knowing where your small child is. We’ve reported the matter to the police and we expect them to do something to help trace our lost children,” said Mrs Badi.

MISSING CHILDREN

Kizingitini elder Khaldun Vae on his part blamed parents for failure to ensure the safety of their children.

“Hunting is something we used to do long time ago but things have changed completely these years. I am surprised that parents can let their children go hunting. I appeal to my fellow parents to ensure we monitor our children so that they don’t fall into the traps of evil minded people,” said Mr Vae.

Contacted, Lamu East OCPD Emmanuel Okanda confirmed to have received reports of seven children that had gotten lost and not eight.

Mr Okanda said they were already in the process of helping the parents get their children back.

“A case of seven children that got lost since Sunday morning has so far been filed in my office and we’re looking for ways of helping the parents get their children back. So far, we’re treating the matter as lost children. They’re not missing as at now considering 24 or 48hours are not yet over,” said Mr Okanda.