A 24-year-old woman has narrated how her mother sold her to a rapist for Sh5,000 after finishing her KCPE exam in 2008.
Jacinta Wanjiku had just finished her papers and like any other child in the village, she helped her mother sell alcohol and run errands as she waited to join secondary school.
It was from the illegal drinking shed at their Kakamega home that a buyer emerged among their customers.
“I knew him as a customer and served him, not knowing that something was cooking between him and my mother,” she told Standard Digital.
“He worked at a local water company and would frequent our home for booze,” she added.
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In November 2009, what seemed like a breakthrough happened, Wanjiku’s mother told her she would live with her grandmother after joining secondary school.
She was elated that at long last her dream was about to start and anxiously waited for the day she would leave their Kakamega home to Kiambu county.
When Wanjiku’s mother told her that one of their customers will accompany her during the trip, she did not see anything wrong.
Wanjiku travelled from Kakamega to Kiambu with a stranger. Instead of taking her to her grandmother, the man took her to his house and told her she had been sold for Sh5,000.
The buyer turned husband did not say anything during the journey to the city, which ended up in some remote village in Kiambu.
“We reached Nairobi at 3am and waited in the bus until 5am before we took a matatu to Kiambu,” Wanjiku said.
She added that it was after two weeks in a strange land that she was told of the transaction.
After spending two weeks with the man's mother for two weeks, she was moved to another home where she was told of her new duties, including sleeping with her new husband.
“I was just 14 and had never engaged in the act before. It was my toughest moment in life,” she says.
Realising how gutted Wanjiku was, her husband took her to her grandmother for a few hours. They would leave thereafter and return to her home.
Wanjiku was raped repeatedly before the man left for Kakamega, his work station.
She bled for two months and grew weak, but the man did not take her to the hospital.
He said he was broke and could not raise money for the hospital, according to him, Wanjiku would heal naturally.
“When I called him and told him I was still bleeding he said he was broke,” she says.
When he eventually called her mother and asked about her condition, she was not remorseful.
“My mother plainly told me to be strong and that it is for my own good to stay married,” she said.
After my mother disowned me, I knew I was on my own and begun on a self-destruction journey.
"I wanted to die".
A Good Samaritan offered her Sh500 to seek treatment, but even after going to the hospital, she was not assisted.
She wanted two things -- to escape from her husband’s house and die.
The mother of one tried to commit suicide repeatedly.
She drunk poison, but it still wouldn't kill her. Even death mocked her.
“I had seen enough, I hated myself so much that I took three packets of rat poison, boiled with rice, ate everything and went to sleep but still woke up the following morning."
She later escaped to her grandmother's house and married another man.
Wanjiku has never bothered to know what happened with her mother or the buyer, her first husband. “When I called him and told him that the bleeding had refused to stop after the second month, he said he was broke,” she says.
When eventually called her mother and asked her about her situation, she was not remorseful and said it was for the best of her daughter that she sold her.
“My mother couldn’t assist me, she told me plainly to be strong and that it is for my own good to be married,” she said.
After my mother disowned me, I knew I was on my own and begun on a self-destruction journey, I wanted to die.”
A Good Samaritan offered her Sh500 to seek treatment, but even after going to the hospital, she was not settled.
She wanted two things, to escape from her husband’s place and die afterwards.
The mother of one tried to commit suicide repeatedly but she could not die.
She decided to drink poison and die in her sleep but she still could not die, even death mocked her.
“I had seen enough, I hated myself so much that I took three packets of rat poison, boiled with rice, ate everything and went to sleep but still woke up the following morning,”
She later escaped to her granny and married another man and has never bothered to know what happened with her mother and the buyer.
She would wish her mother could change and ask for forgiveness, but they are yet to meet after all that she went through.