FAMILY DEMANDS JUSTICE

Man who died from steam boiler burns in a milk factory laid to rest

Hundreds of mourners brave chilly weather to pay their last respects

In Summary

• At the graveside, Bii's wife, carrying their nine-month-old baby, could not repress her emotions

• Bii's father said it was painful to 'lose such a young soul in such a painful incident' 

Mourners at Enock Bii's home in Keringet, Nakuru county, on Tuesday
Mourners at Enock Bii's home in Keringet, Nakuru county, on Tuesday
Image: Ben Ndonga

The 26-year-old man who died from severe burns at a milk factory in Sachang’wan has been laid to rest.

Enock Bii died on Saturday and was buried on Tuesday in Kimoroch village, Keringet, Nakuru county.

Hundreds of mourners braved chilly weather to pay their last respects, trying to come to terms with his untimely demise. 

At the graveside, Bii's wife, carrying their nine-month-old baby, could not repress her emotions. She grieved as the body of her husband was lowered into his final resting place.

“Don’t go! Don’t go my loving husband. Why are you leaving us? The little boy needs your fatherly love. Oh, do not lower him to the grave. We need him,” the wife lamented as her friends tried to console her.

Bii's father said it was painful to "lose such a young soul in such a painful incident".

"He was the breadwinner. It was with a lot of sacrifices that we educated him because we have a humble background. He was an electrical engineer, but we have not even seen the fruits of that. It is painful for any parent to bear,” he mumbled.

The milk factory belongs to Sameer Agricultural and Livestock Limited. Bii, a third-born in a family of six, had worked there for six months as a yoghurt blender, earning Sh349 a day.

The father said they had not been informed by Sameer management on what happened. Not even investigating agents have visited them, he said.

Sheila Koech, a supervisor at the milk plant, declined to comment when reached for comment. But a worker who was present during the tragedy said another employee switched on the boiler that Bii was cleaning. He suffered 87 per cent burns.

 

“We tragically lost him through enormous human error. The boiler was accidentally switched on while Bii was still inside," the source said in confidence.

"He was taken to St Joseph's Hospital, Molo, on May 31 before being transferred to Nakuru’s War Memorial Hospital where he died on Saturday.”

Patricia Musale, the hospital’s matron, said Bii was received in critical condition.

A report by pathologist Titus Ngulungu reads, "The body showed fresh burns from hot liquid affecting the head, upper limbs, back ... The total burnt surface is estimated at 87 per cent.”

Family members have demanded justice.  A law firm acting on their behalf plans to sue.

Lawyer Winnie Lang’at of Kamoing and Company Advocates said the company’s management has been reluctant to explain the circumstances that led to Bii's death.

 “It's not clear why the company has yet to report to the authorities, despite Bii having been burnt while at work. I plan to file the matter in court for justice today,” she said.

The incident was reported at Salgaa police post via Occurrence Book number 13/01/06/2019.

On Monday, four managers from the factory recorded statements at the Salgaa police post in Rongai, Nakuru.

Rongai subcounty police commandeer Richard Rotich said they are investigating. 

“We want to establish the circumstances that led to the incident. We are doing more investigations,” he said.

(Edited by F'Orieny)