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Police claim activist Mwatha's death as a result of botched abortion, six suspects arrested

13, Feb 2019

The search for a missing activist ended yesterday when her body was found dumped at a mortuary in Nairobi. The body of the founder member of Dandora Community Justice Centre Caroline Mwatha Ochieng’, who went missing on February 6, had been booked at the City Mortuary under a different name.   Police yesterday claimed she died following an abortion gone wrong. Six people suspected to have been part of the procedure have been arrested.   Among those in custody is a doctor and the owner of a medical clinic in Dandora. Also arrested was a man who sent her money, allegedly for the procedure. The man was in Laikipia at the time.   Police are also holding three children of the owner of the clinic for questioning.   The owner apparently revealed to the police how and why the body was booked at the mortuary.   According to the officers, Mwatha visited the clinic in Dandora Phase 4 on February 6. But the procedure went bad. She went into a comma after apparently bleeding too much.   Officials at the clinic are said to have decided to take her to Kenyatta National Hospital, but on arrival were told she had died almost an hour earlier.   Sought a letter “The officials sought a letter from KNH to enable them book the body at the City Mortuary, which they got,” said Police Spokesman Charles Owino.   They apparently explained to KNH officials that Caroline had severe diarrhoea that led to complications and her subsequent death.   At the mortuary she was booked under a different name on February 6. This could have made it difficult for the family and her friends to identify her at the mortuary where they visited during the search.   A forensic analysis on the woman’s mobile phone showed she had been in constant communication with a man who was in Achers’ Post in Laikipia.   Investigators privy to the conversation said the two were arguing over the pregnancy. “This man sent Sh5,000 to the woman on the day she is said to have gone missing and she told him she was headed to the agreed place,” said another officer. Asked for Sh7,000   Investigations have shown that the woman had asked for Sh7,000.    Yesterday, after police got hold of the information, they went to the clinic and arrested its owner.   The doctor was also picked and taken to the Buruburu Police Station, where the two confessed on what had happened.   Buruburu OCPD Geoffrey Maiyek then accompanied them to the mortuary, where they retrieved the body and identified it. The family was called and it identified the body as that of Mwatha. Maiyek said a postmortem examination would be conducted to establish how she died.   Caroline had been vocal against extra-judicial killings.