A man who disappeared from home 50 years ago has returned only with a walking stick.
Samuel Machuka, 91, returned five days ago in Masabo village, Nyaribari Masaba Kisii.
The man was traced to the Wote, Makueni county through the Provincial Administration, where he worked as a casual labourer on a farm.
Machuka is said to have left home in the 70s to an unknown destination in search of greener pastures.
He arrived home during heavy rain pour to the open arms of his family however majority could not recognise him save for a few of his age mates.
Robert Makomba, a nephew to Machuka, worked with him in Mau Narok in 1995, before they parted ways.
“I lost my father and came back for his burial. I never went back to Mau Narok, and since then, we lost touch because we had no form of communication then. Recently we got information that he had been traced to Makueni county,” he said.
“We appreciate the Provincial Administration. As Christians under the Seventh Day Adventist Church, we will not hold any ritual, but we will only welcome him back to our home and allow him to settle,” Makomba added.
His grandson, Enock Abuga, who picked him up from Makueni said he was not willing to return home. “For several hours, I tried to convince him that he should return home,” he said.
Machuka said he will return to Makueni to pick up his belongings.
“I was not given the opportunity to pack my belongings, I travelled here to allow my people to confirm that indeed I am still alive,” he said.
Machuka had three informal marriages but there is no information on the whereabouts of the three women.
“Yes, I have been married before, but I can’t be able to trace any of those women. My employer back in Makueni took good care of me. I plan to go back to thank her. I became the son of the soil, and they even gave me a piece of land where I grew vegetables,” he said.
“I have traversed several parts of the country in search of greener pastures. I have been in Makueni since the Nyayo era. I voted for all the last three Presidents and the current one while in Makueni. I have worked as a casual labourer in nearly all sub counties in the county. I finally enrolled for the elderly money while in the county,” he added.
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His octogenarian uncles said they had been looking for Machuka in vain but they had hope that he would return home.
“We have his portion of family land where he would be allowed to put a house. We will support him to settle. If there is a woman who has children she will be welcomed back home,” the uncles said.
Makomba said his uncle is a brilliant man. “He has kept all the receipts from the bank in the Older Persons Cash Transfer Program. The integration process has been smooth. Tomorrow we are doing land demarcation and we have welcomed the area Assistant Chief to make the process formal.”
He recounted that they worked for a white settler identified only as Bruce in Mau Narok.
Makomba said Machuka and his first wife were blessed with three sons.
“He named his first born son Bruce Machuka after the death of his then employer Bruce. He was later blessed with a second born and named him Richard Machuka,” he said.
He revealed that one is a driver along the Nairobi-Kitengela route while the third son could be operating a business in Mau Narok.
Machuka’s second and third sons are said to have been blessed with two and three children respectively. His daughters-in law hail from Gusii and Central.
He has in the last three days been visiting nearby shopping centres to familiarise himself and check on the developments that have taken place since he left.
“I am happy to be back home; this place looks wonderful. I will put up a home. I hope my children join me in putting up a home. I am now retired and thank God for the days he has given me on earth,” he said.