Buses owner deny planning arson attack as police intensity probe

Some of the buses belonging to Chania Special Travelers Sacco which were burnt at a workshop at Kenyatta Road, Juja. [Kamau Maichuhie/Standard]
Police are trying to piece together evidence that may lead to the arrest of suspects involved in torching of 12 buses on Saturday night.

The Chania Special Travellers Sacco buses were burnt when a fierce fire broke out at a garage in Juja.

Juja Officer Commanding Police Division Simon Thirikwa yesterday told The Standard the police were still probing the matter to establish the cause of the fire.

Arson attack

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The police boss ruled out the possibility of the owner planning an arson attack to claim compensation from an insurance firm.

“From our investigations so far, we have found that he insured the buses under third party premium, which means that he cannot be paid in the event of a fire,” said Mr Thirikwa.

He said no one had been arrested in connection with the fire.

Joseph Kariuki, the proprietor of the buses, yesterday recorded a statement at Juja Police Station.

He told journalists that he suspected someone with ulterior motive lit the fire that burnt the buses plying Thika-Nairobi-Mombasa route.

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Big blow

The businessman said the incident was a big blow to him since he had lost investment worth more than Sh70 million.

“I have now been taken back to square one. What happened is very shocking. It is my hope that the police will conduct thorough investigations,” said Mr Kariuki.

He denied rumours going round that he might have lit the fire to claim insurance compensation.

“I have insured my buses through third party premium, which means in such circumstances, I cannot be paid,” he said.

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He said he was shocked after he was called at 2.30am by the caretaker of the garage, informing him that the building had caught fire.

The Chairman of Mount Kenya Matatu Owners Association Rufus Kariuki condemned the incident, and called on the police to ensure that the perpetrators were brought to book.

Joseph Kamau, the owner of the premises where the garage is located, on Sunday, led detectives from Juja Police Station in inspecting the damage.

buses burnt downarsonChania Special Travellers Sacco