In the haunting poem ‘Grass will grow’, Kenyan poet Jonathan Kariara writes: ‘If you should take my child Lord, give my hands strength to dig his grave. Cover him with earth. Lord send a little rain. For grass will grow.’
The poet seems to accept death and is ranting only about madness, which he finds more punishing than death. He asks God for strength to dig his child’s grave. In that sense, he gets some kind of closure and life will go on.
Several families have reported the disappearance of their loved ones from the surface of the earth. Many are left devastated with no closure and not knowing just what happened to these relations.
The mental torture, the psychological trauma and the nightmares they go through are incalculable. One such family is in Nakuru. Eight months ago, two brothers – Moses Kamau and Joseph Macharia – vanished into thin air after lunch at a hotel in town.
“They had lunch together before they went missing. We have visited several areas, including mortuaries, hospitals and nearby forests, but all in vain. We still hope to find them alive,” Mr Joel Theuri, a family member, told the Nation.
Mr Kamau’s wife, Flora Nyambura, is still hopeful her husband will return home. But with each day, hope fades. Her devastation is compounded by the fact that the police have not shared much information with the family about the search.
Mr Macharia was a teacher at Kijabe Girls High School while Mr Kamau was a land broker-cum-businessman in Nakuru town. Mr Kamau owned an electronics shop at Pinkam Building in the central business district.
Mr Kamau lived in Kwa Amos area with his two wives and children while Mr Macharia was based in Salgaa.
The due were reported missing on September 21 and have not been heard from since. Where did they go? Were they abducted? Are they alive? Just what happened?
These are some of the questions their family is grappling with.
“My husband had never switched off his phone before. We just hold on to hope that one day they will be found alive,” a tearful Nyambura told the Nation.
Shockingly, the Nation yesterday learnt the matter has never been handed to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI). Nakuru criminal investigations boss Anthony Sunguti said he was not aware of the case.
“I am not aware of the missing two brothers, the matter is still being handled by officers at the Nakuru Central Police Station where the matter was reported. It is yet to be handed over to the DCI,” said Mr Sunguti.
A family member said Nakuru police had told them that they were still analysing mobile phone data records.
“The corporal handling the matter told us they were still analysing mobile phone data records and tracking their movements,” he told the Nation. However, retrieval of phone data is done by the DCI.
The family has called on Inspector-General of Police Hillary Mutyambai and the Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti to intervene and ensure investigations are conducted well.
The Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut), where Mr Macharia is a member, and the Nakuru Human Rights Network also appealed to the IG and the DCI to intervene.
“I call upon the IG and the DCI to intervene and help solve the puzzle. It has been eight months and officers are dragging their feet,” said Knut Secretary-General Wilson Sossion.
Officers had earlier said that the brothers’ phones were last tracked to the area around Menengai Forest, before they were switched off. Last year, family and friends combed the expansive forest and the Menengai Caldera, but the search was in vain.