Family seeks justice for woman who was raped and killed

Rape

The family of the late Anna Achieng who was raped and killed at her home in Bustani, Taveta, Taita Taveta County. Police are pursuing the suspect.

Photo credit: Lucy Mkanyika | Nation Media Group

On Sunday morning, a middle-aged woman was found lying naked in a bush in Bustani village, Bura Ndogo, Taita Taveta.

Onlookers were not aware that the body that had lain there since it was discovered in the morning was that of their neighbour, Anna Achieng.

Ms Achieng was allegedly raped before being killed and her body dumped in the bush near her house.

Family members said the 37-year-old mother of three was suspected to have been murdered on Saturday night, when her neighbour called her to give her chama money.

Her sister Eunice Adhiambo told Nation.Africa that her younger sibling had undergone a painful death.

"My sister had been raped and the perpetrator inserted sticks in her private parts. Her body was found half-naked and mutilated," she said.

On Saturday, Ms Achieng, who packs bananas at the Taveta cross-border market, had gone to work in the morning.

Because it was market day, she was said to have left work at around 6pm and passed by a friend's house to collect chama money before she went home.

Her sister said she had complained that her neighbour, the suspect, had delayed giving his contribution to the chama.

At around 11pm, the woman’s children called Ms Adhiambo telling her the neighbour had knocked on the door to give her the money for the chama.
"The children went back to sleep and when they woke up on Sunday morning they did not see their mother. They did not know she did not come back the previous night," Ms Adhiambo said.

Ms Achieng’s nephew, Hezbon Omondi, said her aunt was clobbered on the head with a blunt object before she was dragged by her perpetrators to the bush.

She had bruises

"She had bruises on her forehead and on her hands. Her legs seem to have been fractured," he said.

He said the horrible incident has left the children traumatised.

"It was her children who recognised her as they were going to church," he said.

He says it was unclear why the perpetrator decided to abduct and assault her as he was deemed to be a ‘good’ neighbour.

"The children and neighbours tell us that sometimes my aunt would give him food. Other people suspected that he was a criminal but my aunt always defended him," he said.

The suspect has since gone missing but the police have launched a manhunt for him.

"The children are sure it was him because he said he wanted to give her the chama money and he had called him by her name. Why did he escape when the children named him as the suspect?" he said.

As they seek justice for their relative, the family says they cannot afford to pay Sh20,000 for a postmortem.

They are calling on the leaders and police to help them get justice and give Ms Achieng a befitting burial.

Contacted for comment, Taveta sub-county Police Commander Ibrahim Muchuma said the killing was under investigation.

Mr Muchuma said detectives had visited the scene and collected evidence that they say will help them identify the culprits.

"We are tracing the culprits. We are piecing together leads to apprehend the perpetrators of this gruesome murder," he said.

The incident comes as the world is marking the annual global campaign of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence (GBV).

Cases of GBV continue to be reported in the county even as stakeholders increase action against the vice.

Tunaweza Support Group official Fatuma Mohammed said more needs to be done to tackle and reduce such cases.

Ms Mohammed also called for the completion of the Bura rescue centre that is being constructed through the National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NG-AAF) with support from Woman Representative Lydia Haika.

The Sh40 million facility will offer shelter to survivors of GBV as they search for justice in court.

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