Concerns over rate of missing persons

May 27, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 27 – For Margaret Wambui Mwangi, May 11, 2009 has gone on record as the day she would wish to see again.

It is the last day she saw her husband Anthony Mwangi, 35.

“May be if it comes, I will see my husband. That is the last day I saw him. I don’t know where he is and I just hope he is alive,” she told Capital News.

Two weeks down the line, Wambui said she is slowly losing hopes of ever seeing the father of her children alive.

“I still recall vividly the colour of the clothes he was wearing and even the shoes. That day is still very fresh in my mind, I hope it comes again or a similar one which will not end before I see my beloved husband,” she adds.

She tells of how her husband woke up in the morning, left for his daily chores but failed to return home in the evening as he usually did.

“I waited that night and he did not show up. I am still waiting with bated breath. If he is dead, I should see his body, how can a man just disappear like that?” she posed.

Like many other relatives and friends of missing persons, Wambui said she has searched for her husband in all the police stations and mortuaries in Nairobi and Central Province.

“His name does not appear anywhere, if he was abducted, his abductors could have communicated to us,” she said and appeared to blame the police for failing to accord her the necessary support she requires.

The mother of three is just an example of the many people faced with the mystery of a new trend of disappearances of people.

In Nairobi, for instance, sources told Capital News that cases of mysterious disappearances are hitting alarming proportions.

The Eastlands part of the city is the most affected, with at least five cases reported in police stations there weekly.

“It is that serious. There are people coming to the stations to report their missing kin every other day. We have at least five cases,” a police officer at Kayole police station who sought to remain anonymous said.

Curiously, those reported missing are people aged between 20 and 35 years.

“Only a small percentage of those reported missing are seen thereafter and they are only the ones abducted. The others just go missing and are never seen again,” another officer said.

Police Spokesman Erick Kiraithe said “anyone with information on the missing persons to volunteer and help in tracing them.”

“Whenever cases of missing persons are reported to us, our officers try their best in searching for them, if there are people out there with information they should volunteer and assist us,” he said and denied the cases were on the increase.

But even as he spoke, Capital News reliably established that fresh cases of disappearances of persons are reported in most police stations in Nairobi every week.

Davis Karanja, a resident of Wangige told Capital News that he is still searching for his elder brother who was last seen at the bus terminus on May 7.

“We have reported the matter at the local police station and we are still looking for him,” Karanja said of the matatu tout.


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