In Summary
  • According to Nyandarua County Commissioner Boaz Cherutich, police recorded 43 suicide cases between July 2018 and April.
  • The most troubling are murder-suicide cases, as they give health experts, social workers, and detectives an impression that the suicides and murders were premeditated.
  • Nyandarua Health Chief Officer Jorum Muraya says the signs reveal that some of the victims suffer from stress and depression.

The three graves at the entrance to Margaret Wambui’s compound are a constant reminder of the agony she has undergone.

Then there is the pain of wondering what may have pushed her son to kill his two children before committing suicide. This, she says, is inexplicable.

None of the family members can say they had premonitions of the disaster that befell this family in Mwisho wa Lami village, Mirangine Sub-County, Nyandarua County.

LONELY

Kelvin, who worked as a boda boda rider hacked his eight and six year-old sons to death then took his own life.

The deaths left Margaret lonely and her compound dead silent; she has no one to cook for and memories of the once vibrant family break her heart.

“Kelvin was a hardworking boda boda operator, many a time operating late into the night, so I became the mother figure in his son’s lives. I was always with them,” Margaret says.

She cooked for them, supervised their homework, bathed them, and she always had someone to send on errands.

Since the deaths, Margaret has contemplated destroying the two-bedroom timber house where Kelvin and his sons lived as it was the scene of the crimes.

OTHER CASES

Kelvin's case is one of many similar ones in Nyandarua.

In Mawingu Village, two homes are completely deserted as the husbands killed their wives and then committed suicide.

Mr Justin Ndung’u slashed his wife Monica Muthoni to death before hanging himself while Mr Samuel Kamakia, a retired teacher, locked himself inside his house and used petrol to start a fire in which he and his wife Veronica Wanjiru died.

And at Jua Kali estates in Ol Kalou town, a rental room where two Kenya Medical College students committed suicide is still vacant.

Neighbour Joshua Mbogo says nobody who learns of the suicide agrees to move into the room.

SIGNS

According to Nyandarua County Commissioner Boaz Cherutich, police recorded 43 suicide cases between July 2018 and April.

The most troubling are murder-suicide cases, as they give health experts, social workers, and detectives an impression that the suicides and murders were premeditated.

In all cases, relatives and friends regret ignoring changes in behaviour.

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