Security analyst Mwenda Mbijiwe disappeared alongside a man who had several court cases and had been warned to stay out of Nairobi over his criminal records. The criminal records even saw him leave for his rural home in Trans Nzoia County for three months before sneaking back to the city, the Nation can now reveal.
Mr Mathew Muhatia Namasaka had a robbery with violence case and was out on bond when he disappeared alongside Mr Mbijiwe, a man he shared great camaraderie with.
But that is not all. On Saturday, February 25, 2023, Mr George Makesi Osanya, a man who was arraigned in court alongside Mr Namasaka in the case of robbery with violence, was laid to rest at his rural home in Bungoma Town in Bungoma County.
The Nation could not immediately establish what led to Mr Makesi’s death but a family source said he had complained of chest pains before he was rushed to the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) where he was pronounced dead after a few hours.
“We laid to rest my brother who was doing menial jobs in Nairobi last weekend. He just complained of chest pains before he died,” said Ms Sefa Makesi, a sister of the deceased.
Mr Mbijiwe himself disappeared while fighting a court case where he was accused of fraudulently acquiring Sh150,000 from a man by pretending that he was in a position to secure employment at the United Nations (UN).
Mr Fadhili Abdi Mohamed, the complainant, reported that Mr Mbijiwe, a former Kenya Air Force’s Air Defence Control Unit commander, had asked for the money promising that he would secure employment for his sister Ms Shamso Abdirahman at the UN.
On June 17, 2019, he appeared before Magistrate Martha Mutuku at the Milimani Law Courts where he pleaded not guilty to the charges. He was released on Sh50,000 cash bail.
Fast forward to June 11, 2021, and Mr Mbijiwe drove himself to the Congo area in Kawangware estate where he spent some time with Mr Namasaka (the man he disappeared with who was also his driver and bouncer).
It is here where Mr Namasaka, whose disappearance has not caught much media attention compared to that of Mr Mbijiwe, lived with his wife Ms Cynthia Salome and one son.
Friends and family who spoke to this reporter on the close camaraderie between Mr Namasaka and Mr Mbijiwe said that they enjoyed close ties and worked together.
However, after the disappearance, it was only the latter who was widely featured in the media.
“He was a bouncer and also a driver to Mr Mbijiwe; they were close friends who always hung out together,” said a close friend who knew the two but spoke in confidence due to the sensitivity of the matter.
The Nation, in an interview with Ms Salome, who now says that after her husband disappeared life had become tough said that he welcomed Mr Mbijiwe to their house where he briefly chatted with her husband.
She was not so keen on what they shared but as the security expert was leaving the house, he informed her that the following day June 12, 2021, he together with her husband would travel to his rural home in Meru County.
Asked whether she knew that her husband, Mr Namasaka, had ever been arrested or engaged in any crime, Ms Salome said there was a time when he was taken to court but when she enquired from him what had happened, he told her that he had been found with an Identity Card which was not his.
The narrative of travelling to Meru County where Mr Mbijiwe had contested for the governorship seat remains a mystery as detectives traced the vehicle they were using to Mai Mahiu in Nakuru County.
It was later towed to Tigon Police Station in Kiambu County.
It is worth noting that one does not pass through Mahi Mahiu while travelling to Meru from Nairobi County.
However, Mr Mbijiwe who also ran a security company where he served as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) had also informed his mother that he would head home that day and asked her to prepare Mukimo for supper.
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“I knew Mr Mbijiwe so well and when he came here he told me that he was to travel to his rural home alongside my husband the following day. This was a common thing between them and never thought that it would be one of the last days I will ever see him,” Ms Salome said, adding that Mr Mbijiwe had promised to tag her family along on a trip to Dubai with his family in December 2021.
Asked whether she knew where Mr Mbijiwe resided or his wife, Ms Salome denied saying that he only frequented their house in Congo.
Ms Salome further said that on the day of travel, she kept in touch with her husband after every two hours as was their norm.
She said during lunchtime, he sent her Sh300 for lunch but that was the last time she heard from him.
Later, efforts to reach him bore no fruit as he was neither responding to messages nor answering calls until that evening when his phone went off.
After Mr Mbijiwe went missing, his phone remained off until some time in October 2021 when he left all WhatsApp groups.
The Nation has taken months travelling to various counties trying to piece together the details of the disappearances of Mr Mbijiwe and Mr Namasaka when details of their string of court cases came up.
In the first case in 2016, Mr Namasaka had been arrested over a burglary in the Westlands area, Nairobi County for which he spent some time in remand before he was bailed out by family members.
In the second case which is still pending at the Kibra Law Courts, Mr Namasaka alongside Mr Makesi were arrested in 2018 by sleuths attached to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) after allegedly raiding the home of a Sudanese national identified as Mr Mabior Garang while armed with pistols.
A detective privy to the matter said that two house-helps, who worked for Mr Garang who lost millions in the robbery incident which took place in his Kilimani home in May 2018, disappeared after the incident but were later arrested.
“They had been hired by Mr Garang and they hailed from the Western region. After they were arrested, Mr Namasaka and Mr Makesi became people of interest in the case,” said the officer who spoke in confidence as he is not authorised to address the media.
Police reports on the robbery incident indicate that Mr Mabior was not in the house at the time of the incident.
CCTV footage obtained by detectives after the incident showed that the two had left the house with the attackers.
During the attack, Mr Mabior’s relatives said two men, who brandished pistols and metal rods, tied them in one of the rooms before they conducted the robbery.
The gang stole Sh95,000 in Kenyan currency, Sh3.5 million in US dollars, seven golden necklaces, three sets of golden bungles, 12 golden rings, three bracelets, four gold watches and 10 mobile phones.
“This was purely an inside job since the two women went into hiding and it had to take the intervention of officers to trace them during the investigations,” the officer further said.
The Nation has established that it was Mr Namasaka’s brother who bailed him out in this case after he handed over his title deed to the State.
Contacted, Mr Javan Namasaka –his brother-- said that he decided to bail out his brother after a discussion with the family.
“It is to that effect that I went ahead and handed over the title deed hoping that my brother would prove his innocence,” he said.
Asked whether he had at some point shifted from the city and left for Transzoia, his brother confirmed that he had lived there for three months before he returned to the city.
Back in his village home, Mr Namasaka also had another wife who had a total of 12 children.
The family also revealed that they have been receiving calls from two other women who are also believed to have had a thing with Mr Namasaka and who have been asking for money from the family claiming that they had received information that he had been traced to Malindi in Kilifi County.