GBV cases that hit headlines in 2021

Athletes, coaches and members of the public escort the body of the late Agnes Tirop, from Eldoret Hospital Mortuary in Eldoret town, to the burial site at her parents' home in Kapnyemisa village on October 22, 2021. 

Photo credit: Jared Nyataya | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Kenya, like many other countries around the world, experienced an increase in reported cases of gender-based violence (GBV) during movement restrictions to curb the spread of Covid-19.

Kenya, like many other countries around the world, experienced an increase in reported cases of gender-based violence (GBV) during movement restrictions to curb the spread of Covid-19. Even before the pandemic, however, high levels of violence against women and girls were ongoing problems in Kenya. We look at some of the outstanding cases in the past one year.

Agnes Tirop murder

In October, Agnes Tirop who represented Kenya in the Olympic Games, was found dead at her home in Iten after allegedly being stabbed by her husband. At the time of her death, it is reported that the couple was experiencing marital problems. Her death highlighted incidents of violence against Kenyan sportswomen. The two-time world championship bronze medallist was among Kenya’s rising stars, having achieved fourth place in the Tokyo Olympics in the 5,000 meters. The case is ongoing at Iten Law Courts.

Catherine Nyokabi

The casket bearing Catherine Nyokabi's body during her burial at Gatei village in Chaka, Nyeri County on April 20, 2021. 

Photo credit: Pool | Nation Media Group

In April, Catherine Nyokabi, a waitress in Kahawa Wendani, Nairobi, was reportedly murdered by her estranged lover Evans Karani, in Juja over claims of infidelity. Mr Karani, a businessman who is married to another woman, allegedly confessed to detectives that he dumped her body in a forest hoping it would be eaten by wild animals. The case is ongoing at Kiambu High Court.

PS Korir assaults wife

Devolution Principal Secretary Julius Korir will be prosecuted after being accused of assaulting and injuring his estranged wife Evelyn Koech, while she was pregnant. Ms Koech who has since filed for a divorce, reported the assault at Hardy Police Station, Nairobi, in 2018. In November, Mr Korir’s challenge to the prosecution was dismissed by High Court Judge Anthony Mirima.

Matthew Lempurkel

Former Laikipia North MP Matthew Lempurkel at Milimani Law Courts in Nairobi on September 9, 2021 where he was charged with hate speech. In November, he was sentenced to one year in prison for assaulting Sarah Korere in 2016.

In November, former Laikipia North MP Matthew Lempurkel, was sentenced to one year in prison without the option of fine, for assaulting his successor, Sarah Korere in 2016 at Harambee House in Nairobi. Mr Lempurkel reportedly slapped Ms Korere on the left cheek and kicked her on the lower abdomen, inflicting injuries on her. He was given 14 days to appeal the ruling.

Agnes Wanjiru

In October, The Sunday Times, a UK newspaper, exposed how the British Army reportedly covered up the brutal murder of Agnes Wanjiru, a Kenyan, in 2012. Ms Wanjiru, 21, was allegedly last seen in the company of uniformed British soldiers at the Lion’s Court Hotel in Nanyuki. She was reportedly stabbed and dumped in a septic tank. Nine British soldiers were allegedly involved in the murder.

Philomena Njeri

Philomena Njeri (left) and Jonathan Mukundi Gachunga. The two were found dead in their house in Kiambu County.

Photo credit: Photo | Pool

In August, Philomena Njeri was reportedly shot dead by her husband, Jonathan Mukundi at their mansion in Kirigiti, Kiambu County. The husband also allegedly killed himself using the same gun. The couple was said to have had a troubled marriage and were separated for at least two months before the incident.

Campus murders

  • In July, Catherine Ambani’s lifeless body was discovered in a guest house in Githurai 44, Nairobi. The student at Kiriri Women’s University of Science and Technology was reportedly murdered by her boyfriend. Directorate of Criminal Investigations reported that after he stabbed her, he logged into her family WhatsApp group, and asked members to send ‘her’ Sh87,000 to refund her boyfriend, money she had used to help her settle in the college. The man was arrested and the case is ongoing at Makadara Law Courts.

Gertrude Chepkoech, a First Year student at Laikipia University in Nyahururu, Laikipia County who was reportedly fatally stabbed by her roommate’s boyfriend.

Photo credit: Pool | Nation Media Group
  • In September, Gertrude Chepkoech, a First Year English Literature student at Laikipia University was reportedly fatally stabbed by her room-mate’s boyfriend Ezra Koech, in her hostel. Mr Koech, who was said to be a Fourth Year engineering student at Dedan Kimathi University purportedly turned the knife to himself, slitting his throat and stabbing his stomach. He succumbed to the injuries while receiving treatment at Nyahururu County Referral Hospital.
  • In October, Miriam Chepchirchir, a First Year nursing student at Kenya Medical Training Centre in Loitoktok, Kajiado County, was reportedly stabbed to death by her boyfriend, Samson Kipkorir. Mr Kipkorir later surrendered to the police and led detectives to her body at Kamukunji Estate. He was handed to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations in the area and investigations are ongoing.


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