11 killed in accident on way home from dowry ceremony

Police say the matatu that the victims were aboard was overloaded. [Philip Muasya, Standard]

Eleven people died on Saturday night, June 4 after a 14-seater matatu that they were travelling in rolled over at Kanyonyo area in Kitui County.

The 11 were returning home from a dowry ceremony at Mbondoni in Mwingi East.

Police say the vehicle was being driven at high speed, resulting in loss of control and the fatal crash that occurred at 11pm.

“The matatu rolled over, killing ten on the spot. The eleventh victim died during treatment at the Matuu Level 4 Hospital,” area chief Jacob Mueti told The Standard.

The administrator said a few other passengers were injured and taken to Matuu hospital, with some, who sustained serious injuries, being transferred to the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) in Nairobi.

“The matatu had more than the legally-allowed 14 passengers at the time of the crash,” he said.

Police suspect that the vehicle hit a pothole that made it hurtle off the road before rolling several times. Some of the passengers were tossed out of the matatu, police said.

“A majority of those who died were people who were heading home from a dowry ceremony in Mwingi East,” the area chief, Jacob Mueti, said.