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ELECTION 2022

Governor Ndiritu Muriithi rejects UK soldiers' invite over murder

NATIONAL
By Ndungu Gachane | Nov 11th 2021 | 2 min read
H.E the Governor Ndiritu Muriithi during a briefing with Council of Governors [Wilberforce Okwiri, Standard]

Governor Ndiritu Muriithi for the third time refused to meet the British Army Training Unit in Kenya (Batuk) after being invited for the remembrance service parade on Sunday.

In an email response to the invitation sent by Ms Caroline Gachoki-Kagiri, the personal assistance to the commander of Batuk, the governor declined the invite,

“Thank you for the invitation, but I am afraid I have to decline. Until we have clarity on the murder investigation relating to the murder of Ms Agnes Wanjiru, official contact will be at a minimum,” Muriithi responded. Wanjiru believed to have been killed by a British soldier in 2013.

The governor said the silence on the killing was unacceptable coming from a country that has for years championed itself as a bastion for democracy and human rights.

He said Batuk had abused the hospitality granted by Kenya.

“For many years, Laikipia and specifically Nanyuki has hosted Batuk in Kenya. For one of those soldiers to murder a young mother and run away with it for nine years is quite unthinkable and contemptuous of our hospitality.”

The governor said no amount of economic benefits derived from the defence pact between the two countries could surpass the value of human life.

Last week, Muriithi (pictured) was a no-show at the Nyati Barracks when the UK Minister for the Armed Forces, James Heappey, met with community leaders before addressing the press. Mr Heappey reiterated his government’s commitment to cooperate in the investigations into the murder.

He described as embarrassing and a blot to their image, the murder and subsequent cover-up.  Wanjiru is said to have been killed in a party with Batuk soldiers at a hotel in Nanyuki.

But the minister would not commit to the extradition of the two soldiers being investigated, and instead promised to hasten negotiations towards protecting the family of the deceased and giving them closure. 

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