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Naivasha crash brings torrents of tears after day of great joy

By Julius Chepkwony and Ian Ngeta | Dec 13th 2016 | 2 min read
Michael Muli and his wife Mary outside their home in Subukia. They lost their in-laws in the Naivasha accident. [PHOTO: JULIUS CHEPKWONY/STANDARD]

It was day full of joy for Michael Muli’s family. The family had hosted its son-in-law Joseph Kariuki who had travelled all the way from Ruiru, accompanied by members of his family, to pay dowry.

Mr Muli’s family had erected tents outside their home in Kijabe Village, Subukia, where they entertained their in-laws who arrived at around 4pm on Saturday bearing gifts.

They were received warmly with song and dance as is the norm with such ceremonies. 

After the joy-filled day, Mr Kariuki and his entourage were ready to leave.

“They arrived on Saturday for ‘ruracio” (payment of bride price). We welcomed them warmly and everyone looked happy and very excited. We finally parted ways at 7pm,” said Muli.

As they said goodbye, he Mulis pledged to pay their visitors a visit one. But no one knew this would happen very soon.

But the next morning, the Mulis received a phone call from Kariuki which instantly dampened their high spirits.

Mr Kariuki informed his mother-in-law that members of his family were involved in fiery road crash Naivasha, leaving his mother with serious burns and his brother’s wife Wairimu Ngungi reduced to ashes by the hellish inferno, while his sister Grace Njeri was missing.

Devastating news

It was an instant thunderbolt for Muli’s family. Their daylong laugher turned into tears at the devastating news.

Yesterday, their neighbours who had congregated at the homestead to welcome the visitors were back sitting under the same tents crestfallen, their previous joy effaced by the shocking Naivasha tragedy which has now claimed over 40 lives.

Muli’s daughter has been married to Kariuki for over 20 years, uniting the two families for as long.

Kariuki’s early Saturday morning phone call cut short their happiness. Muli was still in bed while his wife was milking their cow outside when they received the bad news.

Muli realised that something heard gone awfully wrong when he overheard his wife asking: “wamekwisha?” (Have they perished)

The harsh reality continued to unfold before their eyes when they saw Daniel Ngungi, Kariuki’s brother, recounting horrendous on accident on television.

Mary Ngina Kariuki who was the reason for the visit and dowry said a nurse called the using her mother-in-laws phone and informed them that their mother was seriously burnt and they were looking for means to take her to Kenyatta National Hospital.

Ngina said Njeri was still missing and family believes she also perished in the accident.

Ngina urged the Government to help them trace her remains.

The family called on the government to ensure proper safety measures are put in place to curb road accidents especially during this festive seasons.

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