GRANT WISH

Former Thika mayor wanted a private funeral, says family

Dismiss as malicious and unfounded allegations that Mundia was hurriedly buried due to a property row.

In Summary

• Family members said that Mundia was laid to rest in a private function at his Kang’oo village home in Gatundu North on Monday last week.

• Spokesman Isaac Munene said the funeral was only attended by family members and a cleric. 

Family spokesman Isaac Munene speaks to journalists at their Thika home.
Family spokesman Isaac Munene speaks to journalists at their Thika home.
Image: JOHN KAMAU
A portrait of former Thika Mayor Douglas Mundia.
A portrait of former Thika Mayor Douglas Mundia.
Image: JOHN KAMAU
members of late Douglas Mundia carrying the cascket bearing his remains during his private burial at Kangóo village in Gatundu North.
WAS THIKA’S FIRST AND LONG-SERVING MAYOR BURIED SECRETLY? FAMILY DISPELLS RUMORS members of late Douglas Mundia carrying the cascket bearing his remains during his private burial at Kangóo village in Gatundu North.
Image: jOHN kAMAU

The first and longest-serving Thika mayor Douglas Mundia was buried without involving residents to respect his wishes, the family has said. 

Family members said that Mundia was laid to rest in a private function at his Kang’oo village home in Gatundu North on Monday last week.

Spokesman Isaac Munene said the funeral was only attended by family members and a cleric. 

 

Munene dismissed as malicious and unfounded allegations that Mundia was hurriedly buried due to a property row and disputes within the family.

“We honoured our father's wish. He instructed us in July 2016 to lay him to rest within two days upon his demise and in a private ceremony.

“But since it was a weekend we kept him for two more days and interred him on a Monday,” Munene said.

He said that the family and the funeral committee is organising a memorial service to be held at the Thika Stadium on Friday, February 28.

The former mayor died on February 13, aged 88-years. He had been ill since 2014.

David Njihia, a former mayor who chaired the funeral committee said that both county and national leaders are expected at the ceremony where Thika residents will pay their last respect.

Mundia was elected the first mayor of Thika municipality in 1968 and served for more than 20 years.

 

He left office in 1992 after quitting the then ruling party Kanu to join the opposition.

Former Mayor John Mutahi said Mundia was a pillar and a giant in civic leadership.

Mutahi said Mundia's administration planned the town properly and ensured all money collected was well utilised.

He said it was during Mundia's tenure that Thika retained an unbeaten national record as the cleanest town in Kenya for three consecutive years, among other achievements.

The mayor will be remembered for pioneering major developments among them the Thika Stadium, Thika Town Hall, industries and infrastructure projects. 

“The former mayor was also a champion of social justice and at one time prevented the grabbing of Kiandutu settlement scheme by powerful people.

“As a result, his private school in the town was closed but he did not budge," Mutahi said.

He added appealed to Governor James Nyoro to return the town to its past glory and ensure Mundia's legacy does not fade away. 

(edited by O. Owino)