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A PARENT'S AGONY

It's hard to take the apology, says Ivy Wangechi's mother as assailant brought to court

;All I want now is my peace to mourn and bury my daughter;

In Summary

•Ivy's mother dismisses the public apology by the father of the assailant

•It’s not easy to just accept and move on, says the anguished woman

Murder suspect Naftali Kinuthia being escorted to an Eldoret Court
Murder suspect Naftali Kinuthia being escorted to an Eldoret Court
Image: MATHEWS NDANYI

Winfred Waithera, the mother of slain Moi University student Ivy Wangechi, has dismissed the public apology by the father of the assailant.

George Kinuthia, a Thika town businessman, is the father of Naphtali Njahi, who was yesterday charged in an Eldoret court with the murder of Wangechi.

Wangechi was axed to death on Tuesday last week at Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital, Eldoret, where she was a sixth-year student.

Waithera spoke to the Star minutes after Kinuthia apologised to the family over his firstborn son’s act. It’s not easy to just accept and move on, she said.

“It’s not easy for me and my family. All I want now is my peace to mourn and bury my daughter,” Waithera said, adding that she has not privately spoken to Kinuthia or any of his family members.

Kinuthia said at Eldoret law courts that his family was too shocked after learning of the incident. He said that Njahi, the firstborn in a family of four, was reserved and never had a criminal record.

“If I knew it would happen I would have done everything possible to stop it. Kinuthia had not complained to me about any problem and I just can't tell why this happened. We are sorry,” he said.

Waithera said she is still anguished after losing her daughter, her family’s role model and mentor.

She had on Sunday at Makongeni Phase 10 Estate home in Thika, said her life will never be the same again without her sweetest girl who used to buy her gifts,  including during Easter. “She’d bring me earrings, perfume, a purse or some fashion clothes. She was a great girl.” 

She said that she did not know her daughter’s assailant.

Wangechi will be buried in Thursday at Mahiga village in Othaya, Nyeri County.

Senior Eldoret resident magistrate Nichodemus Moseti yesterday allowed the police to hold Njahi for 14 days to complete their investigations on the killing of Ivy Wangechi.

Moseti ordered Kinuthia to be held at the Naiberi police station until April 30  when he will be brought back to court.

Senior Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Fredah Mwanzia had told the court that they needed time to have Njahi complete recording his statement.

"Your honour he was admitted to hospital since the incident and we have not had time for him to complete recording his statement," Mwanzia said.

She said they had taken samples from the suspect and the deceased for testing at the Government Chemist.

The 28-year-old suspect is yet to undergo mental tests, the prosecutor said.

Njahi's lawyer Mbiu Kamau said they also needed time to have Kinuthia treated for the injuries he sustained after being attacked by a mob. "Your honour he is complaining of headache and chest pains and he needs to be treated before he can be charged."

Kamau said his client needed to be in a state where he will understand the charges he will be facing.

The court ordered that Njahi, who was composed and kept covering his face to avoid cameras,  to be taken for treatment at Moi Referral Hospital.

The court was packed.  More than 20 relatives of the suspect were present.

George Kinuthia said he had heard about the relationship between his son and Ivy. 

"We are really sorry for what happened. This is really a difficult situation especially for the family of Ivy,” he said.

He is from Gatanga in Murang'a. He said his family is yet to get in touch with Ivy's family but they are in talks with elders and church leaders to know how best to handle the situation.

According to him, the two families knew each other.