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Mentally ill man left Kisumu home for work, hasn't returned

WEDNESDAY LIFE
By Maureen Odiwuor | February 1st 2017
The family of David Omenda who disappeared two months ago. [PHOTO: MAUREEN ODIWUOR]

The family of David Omenda, 48, and a resident of Nyalenda Estate in Kisumu County, has been going through a  traumatising moment for the last two months.

On November 16, 2016, Omenda disappeared and to date, no one knows his whereabouts.

Omenda, who became a widower after his wife Jane Atieno passed on, used to live with his Standard Four son, while his daughter, a Standard Eight candidate, stayed at her uncle’s place.

Though Omenda has been suffering on and off from a mental illness since 1991, the family knew how to take care of him and his life went on normally.

In fact, by the time of his disappearance, he used to work as a loader at Bohar Glassmart in Kisumu, according to his brother, Samuel Odhiambo.

“On the day he disappeared, Omenda had gone to work as usual but left at around 3pm. His colleagues told me that he was in a right state of mind when he left,” says Odhiambo.

However, he never returned to his house in Nyalenda. His son waited for him the whole evening. But all was in vain.

The following morning, the boy went and reported to Odhiambo that his father did not return the previous night.

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This got Odhiambo worried since about two weeks prior to the incident, Omenda had disappeared after the illness returned. It was on October 29, 2016 when Omenda’s mental instability recurred.

Instead of going back to his house in Nyalenda, he went straight to his ancestral home in Kolunga Village, Homa Bay County.

Their mother, Mary Ochieng, called Odhiambo, who is the fourth born and informed him that Omenda, their first born, was in the village.

“He stayed at the village for three days. I went and brought him back to town. I then took him to Kisumu County Hospital where he often gets treatment,” says Odhiambo, who works at Riley Falcon Security Limited.

After a while, he became stable mentally and went back to work. But three days later, he disappeared and has not been seen since.

Omenda is a light skinned man with a height of 5 feet 9inches feet. He speaks fluent Luo, Kalenjin, Enlgish and Kiswahili.

“He schooled in Bureti, Kusunek and Lalagia Primary Schools in Kericho County. That is why he can speak pure Kalenjin,” Odhiambo reveals.

Odhiambo says he has not rested since his brother disappeared, searching for him all over: “I reported the matter at the Central Police Station and so far, there are no positive leads that can help trace my brother,” he says.

He has also visited Jaramogi Oginga Teaching and Referral Hospital and Kisumu County Hospital, but never found him.

“I have even visited the two hospitals’ mortuaries but I have not found him. As a family, we are really  worried about his safety. His children are also traumatised, especially given that he is the only parent they are left with. We are appealing to anyone with information about Omenda’s whereabouts to kindly get in touch with us or give information to police,” says Odhiambo.

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