Nine suspected of burning alive Rongo family over witchcraft arraigned

The nine suspects were charged with three accounts of murder, arson and assault today following an incident where six people died in Nyanga'o village in Rongo Sub- County Miogori County. [Caleb Kingwara, Standard]

Nine people were on Monday arraigned in Migori high court before Principal Magistrate Moses Obiero after they were accused of killing five people from the same family, in Nyang'ao village in Rongo sub County last week. 

The nine suspects, who include Lucas Nyandiga, Joash Onyango, Ben Omondi, John Odeka, Joseph Ojowi , Mary Ouma, Benard Ochieng, Benson Nyagwara and Collins Odhiambo, were charged with three accounts of murder, arson, and assault.

The accused did not take a plea and were remanded at Migori GK prisons.

They will appear in court again on March 18 as Migori principal magistrate Mr. Moses Obiero gave the police 14 days to complete their investigations.

One of the nine suspects Mary Ouma cries during a court session on 4th March 2019 (Caleb Kingwara, Standard)

The suspects were arrested over the weekend and arraigned following an incident where five people died.

The five who were from the same family were burnt alive inside their house over links to witchcraft.

The victims have been identified as Maritha Amollo 80, Helida Akinya, 40 and her children in classes seven, three and nursery school at Opapo Primary School.

House burnt down on 28th February 2019 leaving five people dead in Nyangau village, Rongo Sub County in Migori county. (Photo by Caleb Kingwara, Standard)

Maritha’s husband Elijah Dwalo and three other family members escaped unharmed during the Thursday night incident which left villages reeling in shock.

Dwalo is said to have escaped with machete wounds.