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Court halts Wanjiru s burial

NAKURU, Kenya, May 19 – The High Court in Nakuru has temporarily stopped the burial of Olympic Marathon Champion Samuel Wanjiru.

The order which was obtained by his mother Hannah Wanjiru will remain in force for two weeks.  She moved to court to stop a hurried burial of her deceased son claiming foul play in his death.

Ms Wanjiru had stopped all burial arrangements saying the cause of her son\’s death remains mysterious and should be fully investigated first.

The case is due back in court on June 2.

The Olympic champion died on Sunday night after allegedly falling off the balcony of his one-storey building in Nyahururu. According to police reports, the athlete fell off the balcony after a domestic quarrel with his wife.

Nyandarua Divisional police boss Jasper Ombati told Capital News that the deceased returned home in the company of another woman at 11pm on Sunday.

"When his wife (Trizah Njeri Kamau) enquired who the woman was, a heated quarrel ensued," said Mr Ombati on Sunday.

The wife then ran from their master bedroom and as her husband run after her, she locked the door to the staircase, prompting Wanjiru to look for another way out.

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Investigating officers have pitched camp at the late Wanjiru\’s home trying to piece together crucial details that could help unravel the circumstances at which the athlete met his death.

The team of investigators and experts led by Nyandarua criminal investigations boss Charles Onyango are still analysing the contents of CCTV footage recorded a day before and during the incident on Sunday night.

"We are still analysing the information and even events that took place several days prior to the incident," he told Capital News.

He, however, noted that police were yet to establish what happened but details that will be provided by the recordings will give direction in the matter.

On Thursday, the issue was debated in Parliament as MPs demanded answers to how Wanjiru died.

Internal Security Assistant Minister Orwa Ojode said Wanjiru’s wife found her late husband and his girlfriend Jane Nduta in their bedroom.

“Wanjiru was asleep but the girlfriend woke up when the wife walked in,” he said and added that a heated quarrel ensued.

MPs demanded to know if police had probed claims that blood stains were found in the room but Mr Ojode said initial findings showed that there was no scuffle in the bedroom.  He however emphasised that police are still investigating the death.

At the same time friends and relatives are flocking to the home to condole the family over the loss of the gifted marathoner. The relatives have also revealed that the post-mortem of the deceased is set to be carried out on Monday next week but declined to give details promising to issues a statement in the subsequent meetings.

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More drama has unfolded after the world-renowned athlete\’s death after a number of women came out to claim that they had relations with him.

On Monday, a 25-year-old woman in Nakuru came out to claim that she was his second wife.

Judy Wambui who says she is five months pregnant with the athlete\’s baby had told journalists on Monday that Wanjiru passed by her home at White House area on the Nakuru-Nyahururu road at about 8pm on Sunday night. She later travelled to Nyahururu where she joined the rest of the family.

Wanjiru was scheduled to appear before a Nyahururu court on Monday next week for a case in which he is accused of possessing an unlicensed firearm.

Two other domestic violence and threat to kill charges were dropped when his wife and another watchman withdrew charges against the two-time Chicago Marathon winner in February.

In January, Wanjiru was involved in a car accident on the Nairobi-Nyahururu road, where his four-wheel drive vehicle rolled several times after he tried to avoid an oncoming truck.

He later withdrew from April\’s Virgin London Marathon with a knee problem.

Wanjiru won the Olympic marathon title in Beijing in 2008 with a 2:06:32 championship record after making his breakthrough at the 2007 Fukuoka Marathon. He ran his 2:05:10 career best at the 2009 London marathon in addition to being the first double winner of the World Marathon Majors.

Between 2005 and 2007, Wanjiru twice held the world half marathon record.

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